You may have seen a tweet or a post about Wellntel Community Groundwater Networks, as opposed to just singular groundwater sensors. Wellntel networks are arrays of sensors in which the data from a few or many sensors can be assembled to answer questions about connections between supply and demand in an area or evaluate risk or opportunity. Groundwater scientists have deployed arrays for many years, but the techniques and technologies traditionally used are expensive to buy and manage and are, therefore, limited in terms of reach and results.
The opportunity is clear: for the money, a Wellntel network can be much larger and capture more detailed and useful data, but more importantly, via the Wellntel network, the community can collaborate toward widespread, fact-based groundwater understanding to support smart planning, sustainable management, or know when neighbors might need help and what to do.
Most Wellntel systems sold last year are part of such a network. Often, citizens and community leaders meet to plan the scope and budget of a project, find suitable sites, and agree to cost-sharing, data-sharing and privacy terms that work for all stakeholders. These types of networks are planned or coming online in counties and townships in Illinois, Wisconsin, Oregon, New Mexico, Massachusetts, Montana, and other places. Well owners get the vital operational data, and become part of the community conversation and the community is empowered to make development decisions based on facts.
Existing customers should know that their systems are only part of such a network if they have volunteered or participated in planning, and agreed in advance to be part of it.
If you value groundwater and think others may too, consider any or all of the following:
- Talk with neighbors and local leaders about creating a groundwater network in your community. You might start by asking them to join you and attend a Wellntel Webinar on the subject.
- Existing customers and volunteers can organize potlucks to share what is being learned and spark and grow community networks. If this is somethig you are interested in doing, let us know and we will help plan and provision.
- Contact us and we will work to help you identify groundwater scientists and advocates near you.
By joining forces with other informed neighbors, you’ll be helping to secure your community’s future.