, Volume 27, Issue 2, pp 131-145

Arsenic contamination in water, soil, sediment and rice of central India

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Arsenic contamination in the environment (i.e. surface, well and tube-well water, soil, sediment and rice samples) of central India (i.e. Ambagarh Chauki, Chhattisgarh) is reported. The concentration of the total arsenic in the samples i.e. water (n=64), soil (n=30), sediment (n=27) and rice grain (n=10) were ranged from 15 to 825 μg L−1, 9 to 390 mg kg−1, 19 to 489 mg kg−1 and 0.018 to 0.446 mg kg−1, respectively. In all type of waters, the arsenic levels exceeded the permissible limit, 10 μg L−1. The most toxic and mobile inorganic species i.e. As(III) and As(V) are predominantly present in water of this region. The soils have relatively higher contents of arsenic and other elements i.e. Mg, Al, Si, K, Ca, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Ga, Zr, Sn, Sb, Pb and U. The mean arsenic contents in soil of this region are much higher than in arsenic soil of West Bengal and Bangladesh. The lowest level of arsenic in the soil of this region is 3.7 mg kg−1 with median value of 9.5 mg kg−1. The arsenic contents in the sediments are at least 2-folds higher than in the soil. The sources of arsenic contamination in the soil of this region are expected from the rock weathering as well as the atmospheric deposition. The environmental samples i.e. water, soil dust, food, etc. are expected the major exposure for the arsenic contamination. The most of people living in this region are suffering with arsenic borne diseases (i.e. melanosis, keratosis, skin cancer, etc.).