More than one hundred and fifty people attended a groundwater-focused panel discussion, “Aversion to Diversion: Groundwater, Bottled Water, and the Great Lakes Compact,” at the Big Top Chautauqua on September 27, 2021.
Organized by the Mary Griggs Burke Center for Freshwater Innovation, Director Peter Annin moderated a discussion with leading Wisconsin water experts Todd Ambs, deputy secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and Ken Bradbury, state geologist and director of the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey.
The talk was prompted by controversy in Bayfield County over a proposal to bottle and sell water from an artesian well in Herbster, Wisconsin, located forty minutes from campus.
“The Burke Center fielded numerous questions from local officials and the general public about our groundwater and how it is regulated—questions that have often gone far beyond the Herbster case,” Annin said.
As a follow-up, the Burke Center is producing a white paper to summarize the discussion and provide practical recommendations to protect county groundwater resources now and into the future.