OCCURRENCE OF GROUNDWATER ARSENIC CONTAMINATION IN RURAL AREAS OF DISTRICT NADIA, WEST BENGALRuma Banerjee and Apurba Rattan Ghosh
Arsenic contamination in groundwater has been envisaged as a global environmental problem. The presence of arsenic in groundwater is controlled by some complex geochemical phenomena. Health hazard due to arsenic contamination has raised the serious concern for public. Here investigation was conducted in thirteen villages of Ghatugachi grampanchayet under the block Chakdaha of district Nadia, West Bengal, India during 2005-2006. The aim of this study is to provide an overview of the problems regarding the widespread occurrences of arsenic in groundwater in this region. The study revealed that arsenic concentrations in the groundwater ranging from <3.0 to 231.0 μg/l and in drinking water it varies considerably among the different locations in this grampanchayet area. Concentration of arsenic in water in the Belgaria ranged from 82.0 to 231.0 μg/l, while the concentrations in Bajpara and the nearby village Gobindapur are below 100.0 μg/l. The magnitude is considered highest in six villages and the severity is in order of Belgaria > Ghatugachi > Digra > Nizra > Kashimpur > Muktipara. The results showed that the arsenic concentration in the groundwater in Belgaria was 231.0 μg/l with mean and median value of 217.28 and 219.0 μg/l respectively. Contamination of the groundwater has become a great challenge for providing safe drinking water to the majority of the population in this area. The people of this region are continuously being exposed to arsenic toxicity causing serious health hazards which is very alarming and requires proper management.
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