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Arsenic Groundwater Contamination Related Socio-Economic Problems in India: Issues and Challenges

Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ENVSCIENCE)

Abstract

Water is increasingly becoming a scarce resource, both in terms of quantity as well as quality. Due to increasing population growth, urbanization and rapid industrialization, surface water and groundwater in many places have become scarce resources. Over the years, excess exploitation of both groundwater and surface water resources has caused serious problems in water pollution, as almost 70 per cent of total surface water resources and growing percentages of groundwater are contaminated by biological, toxic, organic and inorganic pollutants (Ministry of water resources 2000).

Keywords

  • Arsenic Exposure
  • Arsenic Contamination
  • Arsenic Poisoning
  • Billion Cubic Meter
  • High Arsenic Content

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Fig. 1
Fig. 2

Notes

  1. 1.

    World Health Organization (WHO) study in 2010, estimates 130 million people are globally affected by arsenic contamination in groundwater. In 2008, a study by Ravenscroft et al. suggested that more than 150 million people worldwide are affected by arsenic contamination of ground water. More than 60 per cent of the people globally affected by groundwater arsenic contamination reside in India (mainly West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand and some parts of Uttar Pradesh and north eastern states) and Bangladesh, while Nepal accounted for around 2.5 million people. The real number will be more in the future as the effect of arsenic contamination can be seen in the long run. In recent times, arsenic related health concerns have been seen in Bihar.

  2. 2.

    Some of the studies have been carried out on arsenic contaminated water are Chakraborti and Saha (1987), Canter (1997), Jain and Ali (2000), Saxena et al. (2004), Chakraborti et al. (2006), Ghosh et al. (2007), Roy Joyshree (2007, 2008), Khan (2007), and Khan and Haque (2011).

  3. 3.

    When certain actions of producers or consumers have unintended effects on other producers or consumers, externality arises. Externality is of two kinds positive and negative. In the case of positive externality social benefit is higher than the private benefit, but in negative externality social cost is higher than private costs. Therefore, in the presence of externalities–positive or negative–social costs (benefits) and private costs (benefits) differ from each other.

  4. 4.

    United Nations reports estimates that the total amount of water available on earth is about 1,400 million km3 which is enough to cover the earth with a layer of 3,000 m depth.

  5. 5.

    Melanosis is a disease in which black spots are found on the body.

  6. 6.

    In Keratosis, the commonly found symptom is roughness in palms and soles.

  7. 7.

    Arsenicosis is the effect of arsenic poisoning usually over a long period such as from 5 to 20 years.

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Correspondence to Barun Kumar Thakur .

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Thakur, B.K., Gupta, V., Chattopadhyay, U. (2013). Arsenic Groundwater Contamination Related Socio-Economic Problems in India: Issues and Challenges. In: Nautiyal, S., Rao, K., Kaechele, H., Raju, K., Schaldach, R. (eds) Knowledge Systems of Societies for Adaptation and Mitigation of Impacts of Climate Change. Environmental Science and Engineering(). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-36143-2_10

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