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Beaver Run Reservoir

Beaver Run ReservoirPlease Note: While we continue to maintain this site, please visit this website for a more detailed presentation of analyses and results.

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IUP–Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County Surface Water Monitoring Project

In June 2011, IUP faculty and students led by Brian Okey (Geography and Regional Planning) and Nathan McElroy (Chemistry) began monitoring surface water quality in and around Beaver Run Reservoir, a drinking water source managed by the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County (MAWC). The reservoir lies within a forty-three-square-mile drainage area and serves approximately 130,000 people throughout northern Westmoreland County and small portions of neighboring Armstrong and Indiana Counties.

Marcellus shale gas wells adjacent to the reservoir, on land leased from MAWC, have generated public concerns and are one focus of the monitoring effort. Water sampling points have been established around drilling pad sites, on major tributaries of the reservoir, and at points in the reservoir itself.

In addition to Marcellus shale development, the reservoir is exposed to acid mine drainage, agricultural runoff, and other forms of land disturbance contributing to soil erosion. Also noteworthy are major highway corridors surrounding the reservoir, which are a potential source of hazardous spills from trucking activities.

  • Energy Sustainability Initiative
  • Weyandt Hall, Room 305
    975 Oakland Avenue
    Indiana, PA 15705
  • Phone: 724-357-2609
  • Fax: 724-357-5700
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