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Arsenic concentration in groundwater: Archetypal study from South Africa
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4350-9950
2019 (English)In: Groundwater for Sustainable Development, ISSN 2352-801X, Vol. 9, article id 100246Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

South Africa does not have significant surface water resources, which is often easily affected by unpredictable and rapidly changing climatic variables, due to its location in the arid and semi-arid climatic setting. In large part of the country, groundwater from weathered and fractured crystalline rocks plays pivotal role in sustaining the livelihood, often it contains toxic metals released from the host rocks. The host rocks that are responsible for arsenic release in groundwater are primarily enriched due to metamorphism and igneous processes that resulted in the enrichment of economic minerals. Preliminary assessment indicates that the main arsenic containing minerals are arsenopyrite (FeAsS), arsenical oxide, sulpharsenide, arsenopyritical reefs, leucopyrite, löllingite (FeAs2) and scorodite (FeAsO4·2H2O). Owing to the release of arsenic from highly mineralized rocks that constitute the aquifers, arsenic concentration in the groundwater reaches up to 253 μg/L (Namaqualand), 6150 μg/L (west of Johannesburg), about 500 μg/L in the Karoo aquifers, considerably higher than the WHO guideline value of 10 μg/L. Acid mine drainage from coal and gold mining is also found to be an important source of arsenic and other toxic metals in groundwater.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2019. Vol. 9, article id 100246
Keywords [en]
Arsenic, Crystalline aquifer, Groundwater, South Africa, Water quality
National Category
Geology Environmental Sciences Oceanography, Hydrology and Water Resources
Research subject
Geodesy and Geoinformatics; Land and Water Resources Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-263555DOI: 10.1016/j.gsd.2019.100246Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85068860844OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-263555DiVA, id: diva2:1373496
Note

QC 20191129

Available from: 2019-11-27 Created: 2019-11-27 Last updated: 2019-11-29Bibliographically approved

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Bhattacharya, Prosun

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