John Peckenham

Research Interests

  • Drinking Water Quality and Public Water Supply
  • Natural Groundwater Contaminants (i.e. arsenic and antimony)
  • Water Resource Management
  • Source Water Protection
  • Remediating Contaminated Water & Soil
  • Science Education & Citizen Science
  • Stakeholder Outreach

Research Projects

  • Decision tools to support water resources sustainability of managed lake systems.
  • New England Sustainability Consortium: Safe Beaches & Shellfish Beds
  • Stormwater Management Research Team (SMART)
  • Groundwater Education Through Water Evaluation and Testing (GET WET!)
  • Materials Management in Maine

Media Expertise:
Water resources (general)
Groundwater and wells
Drinking water
Citizen science


  • Dalhousie University, M.Sc. (Geology/Geophysics)
  • Bates College, B.S. (Geology)


John Peckenham is the Research Coordinator for the Maine Water Resources Research Institute and a scientist at the Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions. As part of his work with the Mitchell Center, Peckenham was integral to securing funding and managing research activities as part of the Sustainability Solutions Initiative (SSI), NEST, and other projects. SSI was an NSF EPSCoR funded five-year project designed to build research capacity, STEM education opportunities, and economic development in Maine.

Along with Teresa Thornton, he co-founded the Groundwater Education Through Water Evaluation and Testing (GET WET!) program to conduct national rural groundwater quality research and education. The GET WET! Program currently works with communities in Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, New York, and Florida. Oregon is expected to be our newest state for GET WET! In addition to his work with the Mitchell Center and Maine Water Research Institute, Peckenham is the Managing Partner of Maine Water Security, a drinking water sustainability company, and is a Certified Geologist in Maine. John has been a professional witness for the specialty of source water protection.

Peckenham serves on the Board of Directors for the National Institutes for Water Research, on the Source Protection Committee of the Maine Water Utilities Association, and on the Source Water Committee of the American Water Works Association. His research has been published in multiple peer-reviewed journals including the Journal of the American Water Works Association, Journal of the American Water Resources Association, Journal of the New England Water Works Association, Environmental Science and Technology, Journal of Science Education and Technology, Environmental Geology, World Water, and the Maine Policy Review.

Selected Publications

J.M. Peckenham and T. Ashtankar, “A Decision-Support Tool to Build Water Supply Capacity: Methodological Development,” Journal of the New England Water Works Association (2014).

J.M. Peckenham and S. Peckenham, “Assessment of Quality for Middle Level and High School Student-Generated Water Quality Data,” Journal of the American Water Resources Association (2014).

J.M. Peckenham, D. Hart, S. Smith, S. Jain, and W. King, “The Path to Sustainable Water Resources Solutions,” Maine Policy Review 21 (2012): 46-57.

Wang, J. Peckenham, J. Pinto, and H. Patterson, “Kinetics and Equilibrium Properties of the Biosorption of Cu2+ by Algae,” Environmental Science and Pollution Research 19 (2012): 3889-3894.

Peckenham, H. Patterson, C. Roesler, J. Pinto, and C. Proctor, “Real-Time Algae Monitoring for Drinking Water Security,” Lakelines (2011).

J.M. Peckenham, T. Thornton, and P. Peckenham, “Validation of Student Generated Data for the Assessment of Groundwater Quality,” Journal of Science Education and Technology 21 (2011): 287-294.

Rubin, P. Garder, C. Morris, P. McKee, K. Nichols, J. Peckenham, A. Stern, and T. Johnson, “Public Decisions for Winter Roads: Salt, Safety, Environment, and Cost,” Public Administration Review (2010).

J.M. Peckenham, “The Occurrence and Persistence of MtBE in Groundwater in Windham, Maine, USA,” Ground Water Monitoring and Remediation 30 (2010): 53-62.

J.M. Peckenham, T. Thornton, and W. Whalen, “Sand and Gravel Mining, Effects on Groundwater Resources,” Environmental Geology 56 (2008): 1103-1114.

J.M. Peckenham, J. Kahl, S. Nelson, K. Johnson, and T. Haines, “Landscape Controls on Mercury in Streamwater Act at Acadia National Park, USA,” Environmental Monitoring and Assessment 126 (2007): 97-104.

J.M. Peckenham, “The Persistence of MtBE in Groundwater,” World Water 30 (2007): 35-37.

Heffner, I. Silwell, J. Peckenahm, and T. Solouki, “Emerging Technologies for Identification of Disinfection Byproducts: GC/FT–ICR MS Characterization of Solvent Artifacts,” Environmental Science and Technology 21 (2007): 5419-5425.

J.M. Peckenham, C. Schmitt, J. McNelly, and A. Tolman, “Linking Water Quality to the Watershed: Developing Tools for Source Water Protection,” Journal of the American Water Works Association 97 (2005): 62-69.

Dupont, T. Clair, C. Gagnon, D. Jeffries, J. Kahl, S. Nelson, and J. Peckenham, “Estimation of Critical Loads of Acidity for Lakes in Northeastern United States and Eastern Canada,” Environmental Monitoring and Assessment 109 (2005): 275-292.

J.M. Peckenham, J. Nadeau, and A. Amirbahman, “Nitrogen Release from Field Stacked Biosolids,” BioCycle 46 (2005): 47-52.