Towards a Sustainable Solution: Factors and Prerequisites of Improving the Kanchan Arsenic Filters Used in the Terai of Nepal: A Review

Barbara Mueller

Abstract


The issue dealing with the high arsenic (As) concentrations in ground water used as drinking water in Nepal was neglected for a long time. Whereas Bangladesh received much international attention and appropriate filters to remove As were installed, the distribution of the so-called Kanchan filters in Nepal only began in the early nineties. Arsenic itself can be readily released into ground water depending on pH, redox conditions, temperature, and solution composition. However, there is an obvious de-coupling of As and Fe concentrations in ground water. In this regard, the partial low removal efficiency of the installed Kanchan filters can tentatively be explained by the ratio of main and trace elements (particularly Fe and As), pH, flow rates, contact time with the nails, and filter maintenance. This review paper summarizes the identified geological background, origin of the As, the established mitigation option and future improvements of the filters. In that regard, the approach of building the filters with locally available material is still imperative for a country like Nepal where industrial jobs are relatively in scarce.


Keywords


Arsenic, iron, de-coupling, clay minerals, Kanchan filter, removal

Full Text:

PDF

References


Abdul, K. S. M., Jaysinghe, S. S., Chandana, E. P. S., Jayasumana, C., Mangala, P., & De Silva, C. S. (2015). Arsenic and human health effects: A review. Environmental Toxicolology and Pharmacology, 40, 828-846.

Adhikari, H. J., & Ghimire, T. R. (2009). Prevalence of arsenicosis in Ramgram municipality, Nawalparasi, Nepal. International Journal of Health Research, 2, 183-188.

Ahmed, F., Hawa Bibi, M., Ishiga, H., Fukushima, T., & Maruoka, T. (2010). Geochemical study of arsenic and other trace elements in groundwater and sediments of the Old Brahmaputra River Plain, Bangladesh. Environmental Earth Science, 60, 1303–1316.

Berg, M., Trang, P. T. K., Stengel, C., Buschmann, J., Viet, P. H., Dan, N. V., Giger, W., & Stüben, D. (2008). Hydrological and sedimentary controls leading to arsenic contamination of groundwater in the Hanoi area, Vietnam: The impact of iron-arsenic ratios, peat, river bank deposits, and excessive groundwater abstraction. Chemical Geology, 249, 91-112.

Bhattacharya, P., Tandukar, N., Neku, A., Valero, A. A., Mukherjee, A. B., & Jacks, G. (2003). Geogenic arsenic in groundwaters from Terai Alluvial Plain of Nepal. Journal of Physics IV France, 107, 173-176.

Brikowski, T. H., Neku, A., Shrestha, S. D., & Smith, L. S. (2014). Hydrologic control of temporal variability in groundwater arsenic on the Ganges floodplain of Nepal. Journal of Hydrology, 518(C), 342-353.

British Geological Survey (BGS) Report (2001). Groundwater Quality, Nepal, 4p. Retrieved from http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/516319/

Chakraborty, S., Wolthers, M., Chatterjee, D., & Charlet, L. (2007). Adsorption of arsenite and arsenate onto muscovite and biotite mica. Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, 309, 392-401.

Charlet, L., Chakraborty, S., Varma, S., Tournassat, C., Wolthers, M., Chatterjee, D., & Roman Ross, G. (2005). Adsorption and heterogeneous reduction of arsenic at the phyllosilicate-water interface. In advances in arsenic research (Edited by O'Day, P. A., Vlassopoulos, D., Meng, X., & L. G. Benning). ACS Symposium Series; American Chemical Society: Washington, DC, 41-59.

Charlet, L., Morin, G., Rose, J., Wang, Y., Auffan, M., Burnol, A., & Fernandez-Martinez, A. (2011). Reactivity at (nano) particle-water interfaces, redox processes, and arsenic transport in the environment. Comptes Rendus Geoscience, 343, 123-139.

Diwakar, J., Johnston, S. G., Burton, E. D., & Shrestha, S. D. (2015). Arsenic mobilization in an alluvial aquifer of the Terai region, Nepal. Journal of Hydrology Regional Studies 4(A), 59-79.

Guillot, S., Garçon, M., Weinman, B., Gajurel, A., Tisserand, D., France-Lanord, C., van Geen, A., Chakraborty, S., Huyghe, P., Upreti, B. N., & Charlet, L. (2015). Origin of arsenic in Late Pleistocene to Holocene sediments in the Nawalparasi district (Terai, Nepal). Environmental Earth Science, DOI 10.1007/s12665-015-4277-y.

Guo, H., Stueben, D., & Berner, Z. (2007). Adsorption of arsenic (III) and arsenic(V) from ground water using natural siderite as the adsorbent. Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, 315, 47-53.

Gurung, J. K., Ishiga, H., & Khadka, M. (2005). Geological and geochemical examination of arsenic contamination in groundwater in the Holocene Terai Basin, Nepal. Environmental Geology, 49, 98-113.

Mueller, B. (2017). Arsenic in groundwater in the southern lowlands of Nepal and its mitigation options: A review. Environmental Review, 25, 296-305.

Mueller, B. (2018). Preliminary trace element analysis of arsenic in Nepalese groundwater may pinpoint its origin. Environmental Earth Sciences, 77, 35-40.

Mueller, B., & Hug, S. J. (2018). Climatic variations and de-coupling between arsenic and iron in arsenic contaminated ground water in the lowlands of Nepal. Chemosphere, 210, 347-358.

Mueller, B. (2019). Ground water contamination by arsenic in Nepal: Lessons to be learned from geology. Austin Chemical Engineering, 6, 1064-1069.

Mueller, B. (2019a): Trace element concentrations in arsenic contaminated drinking water in Nepal reflect surface-ground water interactions. Journal of Development Innovations, 3, 12-28.

Mueller, B. (2020): First results of improved arsenic removal by redesigned Kanchan filters in the lowlands of Nepal. Journal of Chemistry and Applications, 2, 1-9.

Mueller, B., Dangol, B., Ngai, T. K. K., & Hug, S. J. (2020a). Kanchan arsenic filters in the lowlands of Nepal - Mode of operation, arsenic removal and future improvements. Submitted to: Environmental Geochemistry and Health.

Nakano, A., Kurosawa, K., Shamim, U. Md., and Tani, M. (2014). Geochemical assessment of arsenic contamination in well water and sediments from several communities in the Nawalparasi District of Nepal. Environmental Earth Science, 72, 3269-3280.

Ngai, T. K. K., Dangol, B., Murcott, S., & Shrestha, R. R. (2005). Kanchan arsenic filter. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Environment and Public Health Organization (ENPHO), Kathmandu, Nepal. Booklet published by Environment and Public Health Organization (ENPHO).

Ngai, T. K. K., Murcott, S. E., Shrestha, R. R., Dangol, B., & Maharjan, M. (2006). Development and dissemination of KanchanTM arsenic filter in rural Nepal. Water, Science and Technology, 6, 137-146.

Ngai, T. K. K., Shrestha, R. R., Dangol, B., Maharjan, M., & Murcott, S. E. (2007). Design for sustainable development - Household drinking water filter for arsenic and pathogen treatment in Nepal. Journal of Environmental Science and Health – A, Toxic/Hazardous Substances Environmental Engineering, 42, 1879-1888.

Nickson, R. T., McArthur, J. M., Ravenscroft, P., Burgess, W. G., & Ahmed, K. M. (2000). Mechanism of arsenic release to groundwater, Bangladesh and West Bengal. Appl. Geochem. 15(4), 403-413.

Nordstrom, D. K. (2002). Worldwide occurrences of arsenic in groundwater. Science, 296, 143-145.

NRCS-ENPHO (2002). Report on the household survey on the health impact of arsenic contaminated ground water in Bara district. A mimeographed report. Drinking water quality improvement program, Kathmandu, Nepal.

Panthi, R. S., Sharma, S., & Mishra, K. A. (2006). Recent status of arsenic contamination in groundwater of Nepal - A review. Kathmandu University Journal of Science, Engineering and Technology, 2, 1-11.

Rahman, M., Dong, Z., & Naidu, R. (2015). Concentrations of arsenic and other elements in groundwater of Bangladesh and West Bengal, India: Potential cancer risk. Chemosphere, 139, 54-64.

Sharma, R. M. (1999). Research study on possible contamination of groundwater with arsenic in Jhapa, Morang, and Sunsari districts of Eastern Terai of Nepal. Report of WHO Project, DWSS Government of Nepal.

Shrestha, B. R., & Shrestha, K. B. (2004). Spatial distribution of arsenic concentration in groundwater in the Terai, Nepal. In Summary Project Report (Edited by Kansakar, D. R., Department of Irrigation, Lalitpur, Nepal, HMG/Nepal), 85-96.

Shrestha, R. K., Regmi, D., & Kafle, B. P. (2014). Seasonal variation of arsenic concentration in groundwater of Nawalparasi district of Nepal. International Journal of Applied Science and Biotechnology, 2, 59-63.

Shrestha, R. R., Shrestha, M. P., Upadhyay, N. P., Pradhan, R., Khadka, R., Maskey, A., Tuladhar, S., Dahal, B. M., Shrestha, S., & Shrestha, K. (2003). Groundwater arsenic contamination in Nepal: A new challenge for water supply sector. In Arsenic Exposure and Health Effects (Edited by Chappell, W. R., Abernathy, C. O., Calderon, R. L., & Thomas, D. J). Elsevier B.V., 25-37.

Singh, A., Smith, L. S., Shrestha, S., & Maden, N. (2014). Efficacy of arsenic filtration by Kanchan Arsenic Filter in Nepal. Journal of Water and Health, 12, 596-599.

Smedley, P. K., & Kinniburgh, D. G. (2002). A review of the source, behaviour and distribution of arsenic in natural waters. Applied Geochemistry, 17, 517-568.

Smith, A. H., & Steinmaus, C. M. (2009). Health effects of arsenic and chromium in drinking water: Recent human findings. Annual Reviews in Public Health, 30, 107-122.

Smith, A. H., Lingas, E. O., & Rahman, M. (2000). Contamination of drinking-water by arsenic in Bangladesh: A public health emergency. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 78, 1093-1103.

Stanger, G. (2005). A palaeo-hydrogeological model for arsenic contamination in southern and south-east Asia. Environmental Geochemistry and Health, 27, 359-367.

Stueben, D., Berner, Z., Chandrasekharam, D., & Karma, J. (2003). Arsenic enrichment in groundwater of West Bengal, India: geochemical evidence for mobilization of under reducing conditions. Applied Geochemistry, 18, 1417-1434.

Thakur, J. K., Thakur, K. R., Ramanathan, A., Kumar, M., & Singh, S. K. (2011). Arsenic contamination of Groundwater in Nepal - An overview. Water, 3, 1-20.

Uddin, M. K. (2017). A review on the adsorption of heavy metals by clay minerals, with special focus on the past decade. Chemical Engineering Journal, 308, 438-462.

Verma, S., Mukherjee, A., Mahanta, C., Choudhury, R., & Mitra, K. (2016). Influence of geology on groundwater-sediment interactions in arsenic enriched tectono-morphic aquifers of the Himalayan Brahmaputra river basin. Journal of Hydrology, 540, 176-195.

Wenk, C., Kaegi, R., & Hug, S. J. (2014). Factors affecting arsenic and uranium removal with zero-valent iron: Laboratory tests with Kanchan-type iron nail filter columns with different groundwaters. Environmental Chemistry, 11, 547-557.

Yadav, I. C., Devi, N. L., & Singh, S. (2015). Reductive dissolution of iron-oxyhydroxides directs groundwater arsenic mobilization in the upstream of Ganges River basin, Nepal. Journal of Geochemical Exploration, 148, 150-160.

Zweifel, E. R. (2018). Arsenic contamination in Nepal: Water treatment issues and geologic origin of the pollution. Master Thesis, Institute of Geography, University of Bern, 67 p.


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Copyright (c) 2021 Barbara Mueller

Journal of Development Innovations

ISSN 2371-9540

Copyright © KarmaQuest International