Date: 19 Sep 2008

A Multi-Criteria Approach for Assessing Options to Remediate Arsenic in Drinking Water

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I Introduction

Arsenic exposure threatens millions of people in India, Bangladesh, Thailand, China, and Mexico who drink groundwater contaminated at levels (0.86–1.86 mg/L) far in excess of the 10 μg/L World Health Organization (WHO) maximum permissible level. To address this serious problem, the Division of Chemistry and the Environment of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemists (IUPAC) established a project designed to provide a simple and practical guide for decision making on arsenic remediation technologies (IUPAC 2003). When selecting technologies appropriate to remediate arsenic, one must consider aspects other than water quality; microbiological contamination, cost, availability of technical expertise to achieve local remediation, and social acceptance factors must also be factored into the remediation equation. Consideration of such multiple criteria involves many stakeholders at a plethora of institutions and organizational levels.

Successful arsenic ...