Hidden beneath the varied landscapes of Missouri is one of the state's most treasured and important natural resources. Groundwater is a main source of drinking water for most Missourians and provides much of the water used to irrigate crops. Groundwater could be contaminated with high nitrate concentrations from agriculture and, to a lesser extent, failing septic systems. Nitrate levels are higher in groundwater under agricultural land than in water below urban areas. 

Groundwater contamination and shrinking water levels in the ground can affect bodies of water on the surface. Groundwater feeds surface waters and helps maintain water levels during droughts. If groundwater is being used up and the water level in a stream goes down as a result, the pollutants in the stream will be concentrated, doing greater environmental damage.

Current regulations and voluntary best management practices will not be sufficient to maintain healthy groundwater and shield contaminated wells and aquifers from additional pollution. Even if all existing laws were followed to the letter, groundwater would still be subject to unacceptable levels of nutrients and other contaminants. Targeted action will be required to cut off unregulated sources of pollution.

Aquifer Information and Groundwater Availability
More than a dozen major aquifers underlie various parts of the state
Groundwater Levels
Network of observation wells that collect and transmit groundwater level data
Karst in Missouri
Karst is a type of landscape characterized by the presence of springs, sinkholes, losing streams and caves
Solid Waste Landfill Groundwater Monitoring
Solid waste disposal areas require groundwater monitoring for leak detection
Public Drinking Water Systems
Permits, backflow testing and related information
Major Water Users
Water use data aids in better understanding and management of Missouri’s water resources
Wells and Drilling
Nearly 3 million Missourians depend on water wells for their drinking water
Well Logs, Rock Cuttings and Cores
Well logs aid in understanding groundwater and where it resides and moves
Missouri Water Resources Plan
2020 Missouri Water Resources Plan
Water Laws, Rules and Regulations
Citizens Guide to Water Laws, Rules and Regulations
Missouri Geological Survey Publications
Locate electronic versions of our publications

Contact Information