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Archaeology & Anthropology: Open Access

Ground Water Arsenic Pollution in West Bengal and Bangladesh: Role of Quaternary Stratigraphy and Sedimetation

  • Open or Close Acharyya SK*

    Department of Geological Sciences, Jadavpur University, India

    *Corresponding author: Acharyya SK, Department of Geological Sciences, Jadavpur University, Kolkata, India

Submission: August 03, 2018; Published: September 19, 2018

DOI: 10.31031/AAOA.2018.02.000550

ISSN: 2577-1949
Volume2 Issue5


Arsenic pollution is pervasive at shallow depth in low-land organic rich Holocene (~10,000 year BP) alluvium in southern parts of the Bengal Delta. The upland terraces, mainly made up of Pleistocene (~10,000yr to ~1.8 my BP) sediments and capped by an oxidised zone, are free of arsenic problem [1,2]. Arsenic is sourced mainly from the Himalaya. Damodar fan delta, although entirely drained through Peninsular India, is also marginally affected. No arsenic mineral is present in contaminated alluvial aquifers; instead it occurs adsorbed on Hydrated Ferric Oxide (HFO), which generally coats sediment grains. Arsenic is released to groundwater mainly by bio-mediated reductive dissolution of HFO with corresponding oxidation of organic matter. Arsenic concentration in alluvium is broadly uniform, thus release process rather than source is important factor in arsenic pollution. Dug-well because of their oxygenated nature is useful low cost source of arsenic-safe water even in contaminated areas. This is particularly relevant in areas located away from surface water sources.

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