Groundwater Contamination

Information Relating to PFAS - also referred to as Perfluorochemicals (PFCs) – Groundwater Contamination

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) and Department of Natural Resources (DNR) are working closely on this evolving water contamination issue.

Information about the health concerns, history/timeline and site activities related to PFAS (or PFCs) can be found here or PFC Information from MPCA.

A video from the MDH is also available-  PFAS Sampling in South Washington County - which offers residents a thorough overview of this issue and describes the water sampling process.

To submit a request to have your water sampled/tested, please complete the MPCA Private Well Sampling Request Form.  The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is working through the sampling lists as they are able based on current resources. You will be contacted based on your location compared to the current sampling areas. The MDH is experiencing a high volume of requests at this time and will address requests as quickly as possible.  Thank you for your patience as the MDH continues to work through these lists.

This water contamination problem has been traced back to 3M Company disposal sites dating back several decades.  After a lawsuit against 3M was filed by the State of Minnesota, a settlement was reached in early 2018.  Monies from this settlement are currently being used to explore safe drinking water alternatives for affected residents.  Preliminary results of community working groups should be available for public comment by early 2020.  By spring of 2020, proposed solutions are expected to be announced.

For additional information, Washington County has a page on their website dedicated to this topic  In addition, individuals may sign up to receive e-mail updates from the MDH at 3M Settlement.

Please refer to this Interactive Plume Map to view the areas where sampling is taking place. 


Information Relating to TCE Groundwater Contamination and the Baytown - West Lakeland Township Well Advisory

Since 1987, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) have been investigating and cleaning up Trichloroethylene (TCE) contamination in groundwater.  On May 6, 1988, the MDH issued a "Well Advisory" now known as a "Special Well Construction Area" (SWCA), for parts of Baytown Township and West Lakeland Township, and the city of Bayport, in response to the discovery of volatile organic chemical (VOC) contaminants in private wells in the area. The advisory placed special restrictions on the construction of new wells within the well advisory boundary, and required that well owners conduct additional water testing prior to completing and placing a well into service. The additional construction and water testing requirements were established to assure that persons are not exposed to levels of contamination that exceed health exposure guidelines.

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) has been the lead agency, in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, in investigating and cleaning up the source of the TCE. MPCA also oversees the sampling of private wells in the area and provides treatment systems for private wells that exceed the state’s health based guidance. For more information about MPCA activities, see Baytown Township Groundwater Contamination Site.

Properties that were platted after April 9, 2002 are not sampled by the MPCA and are not eligible for a state-provided GAC filter system. These properties are governed by specific township ordinances. For more information on these ordinances, residents should refer to West Lakeland Township Ordinance Section 14 or call the township office.

For more specific questions about this contamination issue please contact the MPCA or MDH.: 

Special Well and Boring Construction Areas

General TCE Information


This is the official website of West Lakeland Township, 959 Paris Ave Circle N, West Lakeland Township, MN 55082