County to investigate water issue

Ottawa County has spent the past few years looking into the state of groundwater in the county, and officials plan to continue that work.
Alex Doty
Jul 19, 2014


The county recently approved contracts to enter into the second phase of a comprehensive water resource study. They’ll work with Michigan State University researchers.

“The study will start immediately,” Ottawa County Planning & Performance Improvement Director Mark Knudsen said.

The study comes as a result of a $350,000 grant agreement with the state, as well as $100,000 that was raised locally from a variety of sources: all 17 of the county’s townships, Farm Bureau, West Michigan Lakeshore Association of Realtors, Grand Haven Area Community Foundation and more.

“It’s a good cross-section of participants,” Knudsen said.

The study will identify and confirm the causes and long-term implications of groundwater issues. If necessary, policies and best-management practices will be developed to resolve the problems, or to minimize the chances of the issues becoming more critical.

“They’re going to do a 3-D model of Ottawa County to show how the aquifers interact,” Knudsen said.

The original study, also conducted by MSU, showed Ottawa County's major groundwater source — the Marshall aquifer — is drying up. The Marshall sandstone is one of two aquifer sources in the county. It resembles a ring centered in the middle of Michigan's Lower Peninsula.

Experts say due to the nature of the system, an in-depth look needs to be taken in order to get a full understanding of the issue.

“It’s a very complex system, which is why we need to build a calibrated-flow model to measure these processes,” MSU researcher Dave Lusch said.

Read the complete story in Saturday’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.



Buddy, i dont think your system needs to be 3d complex models, just give us a report that has been done in this area for years, i seen those type of tests done in other area,s and they spend weeks of analyst, computer results and make sound it,s really a big deal,, get down to basic,s, how is the water in our county ?


Unfortunately this study is using Wellogic data that is not geologic data. It has been proven to contain many errors and omissions. Too bad that taxpayers are funding a project that will yield invalid results. What a total waste of taxpayer dollars. The only reason this study is being done is to have a conclusion that will point to more taxes and water/sewer lines. Mark Knudsen drew conclusions before the study was even out. This is nothing but justification for his goal; add more lines farther out. Many people can not afford the $30,000 average hookup total cost for water and sewer. Call your county/township representative and tell them. The county voted unanimously to approve this.
A targeted study with true geologic data is what is needed. Then good results will appear.


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