GROUNDWATER ARSENIC (As) CONTAMINATION AND SIMPLE LOW COST ARSENIC REMOVAL PROCESSES IN TRIPURAHTML Full Text
GROUNDWATER ARSENIC (As) CONTAMINATION AND SIMPLE LOW COST ARSENIC REMOVAL PROCESSES IN TRIPURA
Tapasi Bhattacharjee * 1 and Mousumi Goswami 2
Reproductive Physiology and Endocrinology Laboratory 1, Department of Human Physiology, Tripura University (A Central University) Suryamaninagar, Agartala - 799022, Tripura, India.
Department of Chemistry, Women’s Polytechnic 2, Hapania, P. O. Amtali via Shekerkote, Agartala - 799130, Tripura, India.
ABSTRACT: Arsenic (As) is a metalloid. It occurs in almost every fraction of the environment. It is moving in each and every corner of our environment. Levels of arsenic (As) in the environment have become a global concern due to its toxicity and adverse effects on human health and other living beings. It is highly toxic even at low concentrations. It is also carcinogenic. Although, its natural sources are igneous and sedimentary rocks, the anthropogenic source of arsenic (As) plays an important role to maintain its concentration in our environment. The mining, smelting and refining, industrial processes, coal combustion, and waste incineration are released arsenic (As) in the environment. It may undergo cycling processes in the environment after release in the environment. This cycling process occurs depending upon few factors such as its oxidation state, speciation, concentrations and the presence of organic matter, competing ions, and other environmental factors (e.g., pH, redox). This paper reviews the natural and anthropogenic occurrence of arsenic in the environment, toxicity of arsenic and newly invented scientific low coast household and the other chemical processes to remove arsenic (As) and its compounds from arsenic-contaminated water and soils in the world as well as in Tripura.
Arsenic, Cycling, Toxicity, Anthropogenic, House-hold, Water-pollution, Soil pollution
INTRODUCTION: Arsenic (As) is a naturally occurring, mobilized toxic metalloid. Arsenic (As) is widely distributed in water, soil, air and biota from natural and anthropogenic sources 1, 2. It can occur in both organic and inorganic forms. Organic arsenic (As) is associated with carbon and hydrogen. On the other hand inorganic arsenic (As) is associated with iron, cobalt or nickel coupled with sulphide minerals 3.
According to the list of comprehensive environment response, compensation, and liability (CERCLA) Act, in US, arsenic (As) is one of the top five toxic chemicals 4, 5. There are four oxidation states of arsenic (As) such as arsines and methyl arsines (As3-), elemental arsenic (As0), arsenite (As3+) and arsenate (As5+), the inorganic form (As3+ or As5+). Among them the inorganic form (As3+ or As5+) of arsenic (As) is highly toxic and mobile in the environment compared to the organic form (As3- or As5-). The arsenite (As3+) is 10 times more toxic than arsenate (As5+) 6, 7, 8, 9.
The main pathways to exposure to arsenic (As) are ingestion, inhalation and skin contact. The harmful effects of arsenic (As) on health are cardiovascular disorders, diabetes and cancer. As it is a known human carcinogen it can adversely affect human health even at low concentrations (0.002mg/l) 10.
The widespread contamination and toxicity of inorganic arsenic (As) is an alarming issue as the metalloid does not degrade, nor can it be destroyed in the environment. It circulates around the earth and produces toxicity. As a result arsenic (As) toxicity has received increasing international attention. The observed arsenic (As) levels in the drinking water often exceed the WHO standard guideline (10 μg/l) in more than 42 nations including China, Australia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Bangladesh and India. Approximately 150 million people have been affected by drinking water contaminated with arsenic (As). The levels of arsenic (As) in drinking water in several countries worldwide cause a major public health issue. The arsenic (As) concentration in the north-eastern states of India is greater than 0.05 mg/l, implying that millions of people are at serious risk of as poisoning 11.
According to the North Eastern Regional Institute of Water and Land Management (NERIWALM) report 2007, the arsenic (As) levels in Assam, Manipur, Tripura and Arunachal Pradesh were above 300 parts per billion (ppb). According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), uptake of water contaminated with arsenic (As) levels of over 50 ppb can cause skin lesions and even cancer.
A number of simple, sustainable and sophisticated technologies have been developed to remove or minimize arsenic (As) in groundwater. Several physical, chemical and biological processes have been invented to remediate arsenic (As) in water and soil. There is a need to review a systematic and extensive study from sources to removal techniques of arsenic (As) in various environmental conditions. This paper reviews from sources to toxicity of arsenic (As) in the environment and summarizes currently available effective removal technologies of arsenic (As) from soil and water.
Meaning of Metalloid:
- Elements that share properties of metals and non-metals.
- Metalloids are located between metals and non-metals on the periodic table.
- The elements found along the step like line between metals and non-metals of the periodic table.
- The metalloids are boron (B), silicon (Si), germanium (Ge), arsenic (As), antimony (Sb), tellurium (Te), polonium (Po) and astatine (At). They are also called semi-metal.
Characteristics of Arsenic (As): The name “arsenic” is thought to come from “arsenikon”, the Greek name for the yellow pigment orpiment. Arsenic (As) was discovered approx 1250 by Albertus Magnus. It is a silver grey brittle, crystalline semi- metal or metalloid. It exists in three allotropic forms such as yellow, black and grey. The basic physical and chemical characteristics are given below:
TABLE 1: THE BASIC PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF ARSENIC (As)
|Relative atomic mass (Ar)||74.92160 (2)|
|Standard State||Solid at 298K|
|Group in periodic table||15|
|Period in periodic table||4|
|Block in periodic table||p-block|
|Electron shell structure||2, 8, 18, 5|
|Boiling point||Sublimes at 612 ºC|
|Melting point||817 ºC at 28 atm|
|Vapour pressure||1 mmHg at 372 ºC|
|Density/specific gravity||5.727 at 14 ºC|
Sources of Arsenic (As): Different natural and anthropogenic sources are deemed responsible for arsenic (As) contamination in groundwater. Arsenic (As) is a major constituent in more than 200 minerals 12. The desorption and dissolution of naturally occurring arsenic (As) bearing minerals and alluvial sediments result in high arsenic (As) concentration in groundwater in deltas and alluvial plains even if the arsenic (As) concentration in the solid phase is not high 13, 14. In groundwater, arsenopyrite and pyrite contain arsenic (As) in excess concentration 15. The main anthropogenic sources of arsenic (As) are burning of fossil fuels, mining, use of arsenical fungicides, herbicides, insecticides and wood preservatives 16. Most arsenic (As) is produced as a by-product of copper and lead refining.
Permissible Lmit of Arsenic (As): Permissible limits of arsenic (As) in drinking water according to United State Environment Protection Agency (USEPA), World Health Organization (WHO), Indian Standard Institution (ISI), Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) are compared 17.
TABLE 2: PERMISSIBLE LIMITS OF ARSENIC (As) IN DRINKING WATER ACCORDING TO UNITED STATE ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION AGENCY (USEPA), WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO), INDIAN STANDARD INSTITUTION (ISI), CENTRAL POLLUTION CONTROL BOARD (CPCB) AND INDIAN COUNCIL OF MEDICAL RESEARCH (ICMR)
|Name of the heavy metal||Symbol||USEPA||WHO||ISI||ICMR||CPCB|
|Arsenic (mg/l)||As||0.05||0.05||0.05||0.05||No relaxation|
Uses of Arsenic (As): Arsenic (As) is a well-known poison. Arsenic compounds are sometimes used as rat poisons and insecticides but their use is strictly controlled. Arsenic is used as a doping agent in semiconductors (gallium arsenide) for solid-state devices. It is also used in bronzing, pyrotechnics and for hardening shot. The most important use of arsenic is in the preservation of wood. It is used in the form of a compound called chromated copper arsenate (CCA). CCA accounts for about 90 percent of all the arsenic used in the United States. It is added to wood used to build houses and other wooden structures.
Global Scenario of Arsenic (As) Contamination: The arsenic (As) contamination in drinking water of Taiwan, China, Chile, Argentina, Mexico, India, Hungary Bangladesh, USA and Thailand are red alarming for the world. More than 20 Country along with India, is in the midst of a large scale thread cause by chronic mass toxicity through arsenic (As) contamination of ground water. However the largest mass of population in the world affected by chronic arsenic (As) toxicity due to drinking of arsenic contaminating ground water belongs to Bangladesh, India and China.
Scenario of Arsenic (As) Contamination in India as well as Tripura: According to the investigations of Central Ground Water Board (CG WB) reveals that arsenic (As) contamination (>0.05 mg/L) is affecting the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh. The Bengal Delta Plain (BDP) covering Bangladesh and West Bengal in India is the most dangerous case of groundwater arsenic (As). The water of the West Tripura, Dhali and North Tripura is contaminated with arsenic (As) 18. The concentration of arsenic (As) in groundwater of this areas is in between 65-444 g/l.
TABLE 3: ARSENIC CONTAMINATED AREA OF TRIPURA
|Dhalai||Salema, Halhali, Halhooli, Kamalpur, Joyanagar||65 - 444|
|North Tripura||Sanitala, Rajbari, Dharma Nagar||122 - 283|
The Symptoms of Arsenic (As) Toxicity: The children are often more affected than the adults in the arsenic (As) contaminated areas. Most of the people from a poor socio-economic background are suffering from arsenic (As) skin lesions. The common features were noted (1983 - 2006) from the arsenic endemic areas of India: (i) Skin itching to sun rays, burning and watering of eyes, weight loss, loss of appetite, weakness, lethargy and easily fatigued limited the physical activities and working capacities. (ii) Chronic respiratory complaints were also common. Chronic cough with or without expectoration was evident in more than 50%.
(iii) Gastrointestinal symptoms of anorexia, nausea, dyspepsia, altered taste, pain in abdomen, enlarged liver and spleen, and ascites (collection of fluid in abdomen). (iv) Moderate to severe anaemia was evident in some cases. (v) Conjunctival congestion, Leg edema was less common. Various types of skin manifestations and other arsenic toxicity were observed from melanosis, keratosis, hyperkeratosis, dorsal keratosis, and non pitting edema to gangrene and cancer. Arsenic (As) induces cardiovascular dysfunctional 19, diabetes mellitus 20, neurotoxicity, nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity 21, carcino-genicity 22, reproductive toxicity 23.
FIG. 1: ARSENOCOSIS PATIENT
Removal of Arsenic (As) from Groundwater: Dangerous public concerns have been raised worldwide due to ingestion of arsenic (As) contaminated surface and groundwater. There are a number of techniques to remove arsenic (As) from the water 24. In recent years, sustainable, low coast and efficient techniques have gained more attention. Commonly used remediation techniquies for arsenic (As)- contaminated water include oxidation, lime treatment, chemical precipitation / coagulation, ion exchange, adsorption, bioreme-diation, phytoremediation, hybrid membrane process (nanofiltration and ultrafiltration) and electro dialysis 25 - 27. Oxidation is a simple method. It converts arsenite to arsenic. This can be obtained by oxidizing arsenic (As) contaminated water with oxygen, hypochlorite, free chlorine, hydrogen peroxide and permanganate. Other conventional oxidation methods are storage of water for about two weeks, reducing 50% of the arsenic concentration in water and solar oxidation. Arsenic (As) in subsurface water is removed by injecting oxygenated water and ferric chloride into an anaerobic aquifer 28. Atmospheric air and chemical oxidation are simple and low cost methods that aid in the removal of arsenic (As) in rural areas.
Coagulation is a traditional way of removing arsenic (As) from water contaminated with arsenic (As). The arsenic (As) contaminated water is treating by the addition of ferric sulfates, ferric hydroxide, hydrated lime, alum or ferric chloride. Ferric salts are known to be good coagulants. As5+ can be easily removed by coagulation process by the addition of coagulants and formation of aluminium or ferric floc. But, As3+ requires further treatment either by oxidation, filtration or the addition of bleaching powder (chlorine) or potassium permanganate. Mixture of alum and chlorin showed 90% removal efficiency of arsenic at pH 7 29. After coagulation changes in pH, phosphate and silicate levels occur. As the coagulation process involves the use of simple chemicals, only a low capital cost and pre-treatment (oxidation) are required for complete removal of arsenic. Arsenic (As) is generally associated with iron (Fe). So, an excellent sustainable remediation technology for removing of arsenic (As) is co-precipitation of arsenic (As) with iron (ferric sulphate) 30.
Adsorption is an important technique of removing arsenic (As) from the water contaminated with arsenic (As). Adsorbents like activated carbon, hydrous metal oxides, ion exchanger resin, activated red mud, zeolite and ferruginous manganese ore are used to remove smell, colour, organic and inorganic pollutants. The pH is determined the arsenic (As) Arsenic (As) speciation. It is an important indicator in arsenic (As) removal by adsorption. The commercially available absorptive filtration media are activated alumina, activated carbon, kaolinite clay, hydrated ferric oxide, titanium oxide, indigenous filters and many other natural and synthetic filters. It has been reported that they remove arsenic (As) effectively. Another technique of removal of arsenic (As) involves injection of electric current (EC) into aqueous medium containing electrodes. It is also a practiced sustainable method used to treat the contaminated water.
In the aqueous medium the anode produces metal cations and the cations oxidize metal to oxides, creating flocculation, coagulation and settling. The 75% of arsenic (As) was removed by the Electro-coagulation technique at 20V 31. Arsenic (As) is removed by the electro coagulation with iron and aluminium electrodes to the US EPA drinking water standard 32. This method is suitable for a rural area due to absence of any chemicals. This is a simple and cost effective method although it requires frequent changes of the electrodes.
Phytoremediation of arsenic (As in water is occurs with the aid of water plants to detoxify arsenic (As) present in water in combination with electro-chemical technique. The Eichornia crassipes (water hyacinth) and Rhaphydophyceae chattanello plants have the capacity to absorb arsenic (As) by their shoots. The arsenic (As) metal can be extracted through an electrochemical method.
The main membrane techniques such as reverse osmosis, nanofiltration, ultrafiltration and electro-dialysis are commonly used to treat arsenic (As) -contaminated water. At low and high pressure, reverse osmosis removes dissolved solids. It has been reported that the removal efficiency of arsenic (As) in hybrid membrane techniques is higher than the conventional membrane techniques. It is extremely expensive. This technique requires high operation and maintenance. It produces toxic wastewater 33.
Studies on the use of engineered magnetic nano-particles (NP) (nano zero-valent iron (NZVI), magnetite (Fe3O4), maghemite (γ-Fe2O3) and hydrous cerium oxide (HCO)) in removing arsenic (As) from arsenic (As)-contaminated water is gaining lot of preference due to their high removal efficiency, fast kinetics, reduction, adsorption and magnetic property. However, this technique is relatively much expensive. The nano-particles with NZVI can be desorbed in the presence of phosphorus present in the ground water or by addition of phosphate into groundwater and reused 34-37.
CONCLUSION: This review has summarized the present scenario of arsenic (As) contamination in the different parts of India as well as Tripura, a Northeast state. Various types of skin problems, melanosis, keratosis, hyperkeratosis, dorsal keratosis, non-pitting edema and cancer can be observed in people of these regions. But still the proper health measures cannot be followed these arsenic affected areas. In the absence of alternate source of arsenic (As) free irrigation water, people of the arsenic (As) affected areas have continued to explore new water sources, resulting in further intensification of the problem.
This exhibits that the effects of this occurrence have far-reaching consequences. Sooner we search permanent solutions to solve the problem; otherwise in future it induces environmental, health, socio-economic and socio-cultural hazards. Despite these reports from different governmental and non-governmental institutes, research centres, survey studies is still unsuccessful in providing safe drinking water to the people of these states. A long-term environmental planning and integrated research is required to mitigate the danger of arsenic (As) poisoning.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: The authors are grateful to Dr. Dipayan Choudhuri, Associate Professor, Department of Human Physiology, Tripura University, Suryamaninagar, Tripura for his valuable guidance in writing the article.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST: The authors declare no conflict of interest.
- Janga YC, Somannaa Y and Kimb H: Source, Distribution, Toxicity and Remediation of Arsenic in the Environment – A review, International Journal of Applied Environmental Sciences 2016; 11(2): 559-581.
- Hossain K, Quaik S, Pant G, Yadav S, Maruthi YA, Rafatullah M, Mohammed Nasir M and Ismail N: Arsenic Fate in the Ground Water and its Effect on Soil-Crop Systems, Research Journal of Environmental Toxicology 2015; 9(5): 231-240.
- Falagán C, Barry M, Grail and Johnson DB: New approaches for extracting and recovering metals from mine tailings, Minerals Engineering 2017; 106: 71-78.
- Palmieri AM and Molinari LB: Effect of Sodium Arsenite on mouse skin carcinogenesis. Toxicologic Pathology 2015; 43: 704-714.
- Rosen BR and Liu ZJ: Transport pathways for arsenic and selenium: A mini review, Environ. Int. 2009; 35: 512-515.
- Shen S, Li FX, Cullen WR, Weinfeld M and Le CX: Arsenic binding to proteins. Chemical Review 2013; 113: 7769-7792.
- Ferguson JF and Gavis J: A review of the arsenic cycle in natural waters, Water Res. 1972; 6: 1259-1274.
- Wang S and Mulligan CN: Occurrence of arsenic contamination in Canada: Sources, behavior and distribution, Science of the Total Environment 2006; 366: 701-721.
- Srivastava PK, Vaish A, Dwivedi S, Chakrabarty D, Singh N and Tripathi RD: Biological removal of arsenic pollution by soil fungi, Sci Total Environ 2011; 409: 2430-2442.
- Jaishankar M, Tseten T, Anbalagan N, Mathew BB and Beeregowda NK: Toxicity, mechanism and health effects of some heavy metals. Interdiscip Toxicol 2014; 7(2): 60-72.
- Kumar PC: Status and mitigation of arsenic contamination in groundwater in India. The International Journal of Earth and Environmental Sciences 2015; 2(1): 1-10.
- Shankar S, Shanker U and Shikha: Arsenic contamination of groundwater: A review of sources, prevalence, health risks, and strategies for mitigation. The Scientific World Journal 2014; 1- 18.
- Yanga N, Shena Z, Datta S and Johannessona HK: High arsenic (As) concentrations in the shallow groundwaters of southern Louisiana: Evidence of microbial controls on As mobilization from sediments. Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies 2016; 5: 100-113.
- Herath I, Vithanage M, Bundschuh J, Maity PJ and Bhattacharya P: Natural arsenic in global groundwater: Distribution and geochemical triggers for mobilization. Curr Pollution Rep 2016; 2: 68-89.
- Sung W: Jeen. Reactive transport modelling for mobilization of arsenic in a sediment downgradient from an iron permeable reactive barrier. Water 2017; 9: 1-3.
- Matta G and Gjyli L: Mercury, lead and arsenic: impact on environment and human health. Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences 2016; 9(2): 718-725.
- Paul D: Research on heavy metal pollution of river Ganga: A review. Annals of Agrarian Science 2017; 15: 278-286.
- Chandrashekhar KA, Chandrasekharam D and Farooq HS: Contamination and mobilization of arsenic in the soil and groundwater and its influence on the irrigated crops, Manipur Valley, India. Environ Earth Sci 2016; 75: 142
- Oyagbemi AA, Omobowale OT, Asenuga RE, Abiola OJ, Adedapo AA and Yakubu AM: Kolaviron attenuated arsenic acid induced-cardiorenal dysfunction via regulation of ROS, C-reactive proteins (CRP), cardiac troponin I (CTnI) and BCL2. Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine xxx 2017; 1-14.
- Sung CT, Huang WJ and Guo RH: Association between Arsenic Exposure and Diabetes: A Meta-Analysis. BioMed Research International 2014; 1- 10.
- Sharma B, Singh S and Siddiqi JN: Biomedical implications of heavy metals induced imbalances in redox systems. BioMed Research International 2014; 1- 26.
- Hong SY, Song HK and Chung YJ: Health Effects of Chronic Arsenic Exposure. J Prev Med Public Health 2014; 47(5): 245-252.
- Kim JY and Kim MJ: Arsenic Toxicity in Male Reproduction and Development. Dev Reprod 2015; 19(4): 167-180.
- Nicomel RN, Karen Leus K, Folens K, Voort DVP and Laing DG: Technologies for arsenic removal from water: Current status and future perspectives. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 2016; 13: 2-24.
- Janga CY, Yashoda Somannaa Y and Kimb H: Source, distribution, toxicity and remediation of arsenic in the environment – A review. International Journal of Applied Environmental Sciences 2016; 11(2): 559-581.
- Gunatilake SK: Methods of removing heavy metals from industrial wastewater. Journal of Multidisciplinary Engineering Science Studies 2015; 1(1): 12-18.
- Reinse M: Arsenic removal technologies: A review. Water Online 2015.
- Neil WC, Yang JY, Schupp D and Jun SY: Water Chemistry impacts on arsenic mobilization from arsenopyrite dissolution and secondary mineral precipitation: Implications for managed aquifer recharge. Environmental Science and Technology 2014; 48, 4395-4405.
- Guo Q, Cao Y, Yin Z, Yu Z, Zhao Q and Shu Z: Enhanced removal of arsenic from water by synthetic nanocrystalline lowaite. Scientific Reports 2017; 7: 1-10.
- Ahmad A, Richards AL and Bhattacharya P: Best Practice Guide on the Control of Arsenic in Drinking Water. IWA Publishing, Prosun Bhattacharya, David A. Polya and Dragana Jovanovic Edition 2017.
- Kumar NS and Goel S: Factors influencing arsenic and nitrate removal from drinking water in a continuous flow electrocoagulation (EC) process, J. Hazard. Mater 2010; 173: 528-533.
- Heffron J, Marhefke M and Mayer KB: Removal of trace metal contaminants from potable water by electro-coagulation. Scientific Reports 2016 | 6:28478 | DOI: 10.1038/srep28478.
- Bolisetty S, Reinhold N, Zeder C, Orozcob NM and Mezzenga R: Efficient purification of arsenic-contaminated water using amyloid - carbon hybrid membranes. Chem. Commun 2017; 53: 5714-5717.
- Li J, Zhou Q, Liu Y and Lei M: Recyclable nanoscale zero-valent iron-based magnetic polydopamine coated nanomaterials for the adsorption and removal of phenanthrene and anthracene. Science and Technology of Advanced Materials 2017; 18(1): 3-16.
- Li R, Li Q, Gao S and Shang JK: Exceptional arsenic adsorption performance of hydrous cerium oxide nanoparticles: Part A. Adsorption capacity and mechanism. Chem. Eng. J 2012; 185: 127-135.
- Tang SC and Lo IM: Magnetic nanoparticles: essential factors for sustainable environmental applications. Water Res 2013; 47: 613-2632.
- Liu W, Tian S, Zhao X, Xie W, Gong Y and Zhao D: Application of Stabilized Nanoparticles for In Situ Remediation of Metal-Contaminated Soil and Ground water: a Critical Review. Curr Pollution Rep 2015; 1: 280-291.
How to cite this article:
Bhattacharjee T and Goswami M: Groundwater arsenic (As) contamination and simple low cost arsenic removal processes in Tripura. Int J Pharm Sci Res 2018; 9(7): 2675-80. doi: 10.13040/IJPSR.0975-8232.9(7).2675-80.
All © 2013 are reserved by International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research. This Journal licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
T. Bhattacharjee * and M. Goswami
Reproductive Physiology and Endocrinology Laboratory, Department of Human Physiology, Tripura University (A Central University) Suryamaninagar, Agartala, Tripura, India.
17 November, 2017
12 January, 2018
27 January, 2018
01 July, 2018