September 6, 2012

Water study back on track

Water study back on track
By Jerry W. Kram
A water study being conducted by the Fort Berthold Community College that was halted over methodology concerns will resume this month after researchers identified a new lab to do the necessary chemical analyses.
The study is being conducted by the Environmental Studies Department at FBCC supported by a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency. Kerry Hartman is managing the study, which he had hoped to complete over the summer. However, after submitting his first round of samples to an EPA certified laboratory, he was told that the methodology was too close to that of a study being conducted near Killdeer. That was understandable since Hartman took his methods largely from the EPA approved study being done at Killdeer.
“I questioned my ability to create a better (methodology) than one that had been created after years of refinement by the EPA themselves,” Hartman said. “So I decided to keep using the same methodology but to go to a different lab.”
Hartman looked at several possibilities before settling on contracting with North Dakota State University to do the analyses.
“I’ve searched for other labs and after a process of cost-benefit analysis I will be using the labs at NDSU,” Hartman said. “There are some labs that are EPA certified. But those labs are extremely expensive. They would have cost about $100 per sample per well. So I decided to go with NDSU.”

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