Water Quality

Expert information and programs related to drinking water, water conservation, pond management, on-lot septic, non-point source pollution, water policy and watershed education.

Latest News

Pennsylvanians can't wait for clean water. The state must act now: Editorial
May 22, 2017
When you turn on the kitchen faucet at home, you count on a couple of things: First, that the water will flow freely. And second, that it's going to be clean and safe for you and your family to drink.
Forested stream in winter Photo: Sandy Smith, Penn State Extension
Penn State Extension Webinar Discusses Nature’s Financial Benefits
May 22, 2017
What is nature worth? Does it have a hidden value beyond the beauty and welfare of a community? What are we willing to pay to maintain or enhance our quality of life, health, cost of living and economy that nature provides?
DEP Proposes Plan to Improve Safe Drinking Water Oversight
May 22, 2017
In order to provide mandated protections to public drinking water, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) proposes to increase the number of inspectors who ensure safe drinking water is delivered from the state’s more than 8,500 public water systems to more than 10 million Pennsylvania residents. To fund the positions, DEP proposes a new annual fee and amendments to existing permit fees for public water systems. The proposed fee package will allow DEP to expand the existing drinking water staff complement by more than 50 percent and improve inspection rates of public water systems.
North America's freshwater lakes are getting saltier - Proximity to roads -- and road salt -- predicts escalating salinization
May 22, 2017
North America's freshwater lakes are getting saltier due to development and exposure to road salt. A study of 371 lakes published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reports that many Midwestern and Northeastern lakes are experiencing increasing chloride trends, with some 44% of lakes sampled in these regions undergoing long-term salinization.