EPA in Goshen to Investigate Groundwater Contaminants Detected at the North Wellfield

In 2016, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) performed a groundwater source investigation to determine the path of flow for cis-1,2- dichloroethene identified in the North Wellfield’s finished water. Routine testing indicated a slight increase in the contamination from 1.3 parts per billion (ppb) in 2013 to 4.8 ppb in 2016. As a general reference, the drinking water maximum contaminant level (MCL) for cis-1,2- dichloroethene is set at 70 ppb before additional water treatment is required. To be clear, finished drinking water provided to residents and businesses in the City of Goshen meet all federal Safe Drinking Water Act standards. IDEM’s 2016 groundwater testing proved inconclusive on the contaminant’s path of travel and additional funding was needed to investigate the issue further. In August 2017, IDEM conducted additional groundwater sampling in an effort to identify possible sources. In October 2017, the City of Goshen sent a letter of support to IDEM to pursue Superfund listing for cleanup assistance.

To further evaluate the site for possible Superfund listing, IDEM’s site investigation program, with funding assistance from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), began drilling
its first deep well on Monday, Sept. 17, 2018 to supplement the 2017 sampling. The work plan
called for testing six groundwater wells at the North Water Plant and for installation of five deep
sampling wells strategically placed around the wellfield. Sampling from the new wells was
completed on Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2018. IDEM and the U.S. EPA will make a final determination for listing based on sample results.

As the groundwater investigation progresses, the Goshen Water Utility has increased the water testing frequency at the wellfield for the contaminant of concern. The additional testing will provide assurances the finished water supplied to the water system remains safe. Customers interested in changes in Goshen’s water quality are encouraged to obtain a copy of the Water Utility’s Consumer Confidence Report (CCR) published annually. Copies of the report are mailed to each customer, and are currently available in the Goshen Utility Billing Office at 203 S. Fifth Street and on the City’s website.