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Suitability Assessment of Surface Water Quality with Reference to Drinking, Irrigation and Fish Culture: A Human Health Risk Perspective

Abstract

A multi-purpose Water Quality Index (WQI) was developed to assess the suitability of surface water for drinking, fish-culture, as well as irrigation in Durgapur industrial city, India. WQI was calculated for 48 sampling locations, where 2.08%, 4.17% and 22.91% of the sampling locations have excellent water quality (WQI: 0–25) and 20.83%, 33.33% and 34.35% have good quality (WQI: 25–50), which represents its suitability for drinking, irrigation, and fish-culture respectively. Further, health risk was evaluated by Hazard Index (HI), which reflected that the population were prone to risk on oral ingestion [HI (female): 1.52; HI (male): 1.29], while safe for dermal contact (HI < 1). Potent toxic pollutants like Co, F, Mn, NO3 were identified to cause health hazards. The pollutants were attributed to rock-weathering, industries, agriculture and municipal sources, was investigated by factor analysis. This novel assessment technique with integration of geographical information system affirmed its effectiveness and easiness to evaluate water quality for multiple uses in any area.

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Ministry of Human Recourse Development, Government of India for funding the research work and Indian Institute of Technology (Indian School of Mines), Dhanbad for providing laboratory facilities.

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Correspondence to Biswajit Paul.

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Saha, P., Paul, B. Suitability Assessment of Surface Water Quality with Reference to Drinking, Irrigation and Fish Culture: A Human Health Risk Perspective. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 101, 262–271 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-018-2389-2

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Keywords

  • Fish culture
  • Hazard Index
  • Irrigation
  • Factor analysis
  • Water Quality Index