About Our Water

Source of South St. Paul Water

The City provides drinking water to its residents from a groundwater source: four wells ranging from 339 to 500 feet deep, that draw water from the Jordan, Jordan-St. Lawrence, and Prairie Du Chien-Jordan aquifers.

Decisions That Affect Our Water

Water is a valuable natural resource and part of a deeply interconnected system. What we pour on the ground and what we discharge into the air eventually ends up in our water.

Every day, people make decisions that affect water. Whether it’s turning off the tap when brushing their teeth, caring for their lawn with 0 phosphorous fertilizer, or disposing of household hazardous wastes like motor oil at the Dakota County Eco-Site. Each individual positive decision adds up for safer, cleaner, purer drinking water. Single actions multiply into citywide results when individuals, organizations, and companies work together to clean up waterways, protect watersheds, and curb pollution.

PFBA Levels

PFBA (perfluorobutanoic acid) has been detected at a very low level in South St. Paul water. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has established a Health Based Value (HBV) for PFBA of 7 ppb. This number is higher than the drinking water guideline of 1 ppb that was used previously. That guideline was based on limited health information about PFBA and how it might compare with PFOA.

Health Based Value

An Health Based Value (HBV) is the calculated concentration of a groundwater contaminant, or a mixture of contaminants, that poses little or no risk to health, even if consumed daily over a lifetime. An HBV is one consideration used by state groundwater and environmental protection programs to make decisions and recommendations about groundwater contamination.

HBV Health Impacts

The new HBV for PFBA reflects a clearer understanding of its potential for health impacts during fetal and other developmental life stages and of how long it remains in the human body. The new HBV is designed to protect human health, including developing fetuses, infants, and children. As with all other health based exposure limits for contaminants, MDH will review new toxicological information as it becomes available. The amount of PFBA found in the water in South St. Paul is 0.4 ppb.

The Minnesota Department of Health monitors South St. Paul's drinking water. Each year, the city publishes the results of this monitoring.