Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 24, Issue 4, pp 3675–3704 | Cite as

Use of major ions to evaluate the hydrogeochemistry of groundwater influenced by reclamation and seawater intrusion, West Nile Delta, Egypt

  • Zenhom El-Said SalemEmail author
  • Osman M. Osman
Research Article


The aim of this research is to evaluate the groundwater geochemistry in western Nile Delta area as an example of an aquifer influenced by reclamation and seawater intrusion. To conduct this study, 63 groundwater samples and one surface water sample from El Nubaria Canal were collected. To estimate the origin of dissolved ions and the geochemical processes influencing this groundwater, integration between land use change, pedological, hydrogeological, hydrogeochemical, and statistical approaches was considered. Results suggest that the groundwater flow regime changed from northeast and southwest directions around El Nubaria canal before 1966 to northern and northeastern directions due to newly constructed channel network. Soil salinity and mineral contents, seepage from irrigation canal, and seawater intrusion are the main factors controlling the groundwater chemistry. Statistically, the groundwater samples were classified into eight groups, one to four for the deep groundwater and five to eight for the shallow groundwater. The deep groundwater is characterized by two groups of chemicals (SO4–HCO3–Mg–Ca–K and Cl–Na), while the shallow groundwater groups of chemicals are Na–Cl–SO4 and K–HCO3–Ca–Mg. Both shallow groundwater and deep groundwater are mostly saturated with respect to carbonate minerals and undersaturated with respect to chloride minerals. Sulfate minerals are above the saturation limit in the shallow groundwater, but in the deep samples, these minerals are under the saturation limit. Ion exchange, carbonate production, mineral precipitation, and seawater intrusion are the geochemical processes governing the groundwater chemistry in the study area.


Major ions Hydrogeochemistry Reclamation Seawater intrusion El Nubaria West Nile Delta Egypt 



The authors are thankful to Prof. Céline Guéguen (Editor of Environmental Science and Pollution Research) and the two anonymous reviewers for their constructive remarks, which lead to the improvement of the quality of this paper. The language remarks of Dr. Barret Kurylyk (McMaster University, Canada) were significant in improving the English grammar of this manuscript. The hydrochemical data are taken from the PhD thesis of Osman M. Osman; therefore, AT AbdelHameed and M Gadallah are greatly thanked for permitting the publication of this work as they and the first author were supervising the thesis.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Geology Department, Faculty of ScienceTanta UniversityTantaEgypt
  2. 2.Geology Department, Faculty of ScienceDamanhour UniversityDamanhourEgypt

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