Arsenic contamination of groundwater is a form of groundwater pollution which is often due to naturally occurring high concentrations of arsenic in deeper levels of groundwater. It is a high-profile problem due to the use of deep tube wells for water supply in the Ganges Delta , causing serious arsenic poisoning to large numbers of people. A study found that over million people in more than 70 countries are probably affected by arsenic poisoning of drinking water. The problem became serious health concern after mass poisoning of water in Bangladesh.
Arsenic contamination of groundwater
Inorganic arsenic species in groundwater: a case study from Purbasthali (Burdwan), India
The report describes the results of the study of arsenic pollution in groundwater in Nadia as well as the hydro-chemical study of the river Hoogly in West Bengal. The alluvial tract along the river Hoogly covering a stretch of around km encompassing eight districts is affected by arsenic pollution of ground water, the source being geogenic. The occurrence of iron-pyrite and the change of geo-chemical environment due to over-exploitation of groundwater or excessive fluctuation of groundwater table are the possible reasons for decomposition of pyrite to ferrous sulphate, ferric sulphate and sulphuric acid. As a result, the groundwater of the region is characterized by high iron content. In the study, the water samples collected from selected villages of Nadia district, West Bengal shows elevated concentrations of arsenic. The trace element data of lithological log of drill cuttings of the PHED bore-hole site at Ghetugachi in Chakdah block, Nadia district shows consistent arsenic contamination in the upper aquifer also.
Arsenic and Drinking Water
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This case study is part of a collection of pages developed by students in the introductory-level Geology and Human Health course in the Department of Earth Sciences, Montana State University. Learn more about this project. Through my studies I have taken a closer look at the devastating health effects of arsenic leaking into the ground water that millions depend upon. Water is an essential ingredient for every life form, without it there would be no possibility of life. When such a necessary element for survival is jeopardized for millions of people, it becomes a call to action for those capable of relief.