Starting in Fall 2015, my students and I began a study of the roadside springs in central New York State. The overall plan is to find springs that people regularly visit to fill up bottles, from small containers to five-gallon carboys. Questions that we want to answer include:
- What is dissolved in the water?
- Are there bacteria or other organisms in the water?
- Does water flow and/or composition change over the year?
- What reasons lead people to use these water sources?
We are using the ion-chromatograph at Ithaca College and the ICP-OES at Cornell University to analyze the water as well as EPA-based methods to determine the presence of total choliform and e. coli. Students are developing several interview strategies to understand why people use the springs.
Please visit our website https://www.roadsidesprings.info to see the results of our work.