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Evaluating the Spatial Distribution of Quantitative Risk and Hazard Level of Arsenic Exposure in Groundwater, case Study of Qorveh County, Kurdistan Iran

Author(s): Touraj Nasrabadi | Niloufar Shirani Bidabadi

Journal: Iranian Journal of Environmental Health Science & Engineering
ISSN 1735-1979

Volume: 10;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 30;
Date: 2013;
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Keywords: Arsenic | Groundwater | Risk | Hazard | Qorveh | Drinking Water

Regional distribution of quantitative risk and hazard levels due to arsenic poisoning in some parts of Iran’s Kurdistan province is considered. To investigate the potential risk and hazard level regarding arsenic-contaminated drinking water and further carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic effects on villagers, thirteen wells in rural areas of Qorveh County were considered for evaluation of arsenic concentration in water. Sampling campaign was performed in August 2010 and arsenic concentration was measured via the Silver Diethyldithiocarbamate method. The highest and lowest arsenic concentration are reported in Guilaklu and Qezeljakand villages with 420 and 67 μg/L, respectively. None of thirteen water samples met the maximum contaminant level issued by USEPA and Institute of Standards and Industrial Research of Iran (10 ppb). The highest arsenic concentration and consequently risk and hazard levels belong to villages situated alongside the eastern frontiers of the county. Existence of volcanic activities within the upper Miocene and Pleistocene in this part of the study area may be addressed as the main geopogenic source of arsenic pollution. Quantitative risk values are varying from 1.49E-03 in Qezeljakand to 8.92E-03 in Guilaklu and may be interpreted as very high when compared by similar studies in Iran. Regarding non-carcinogenic effects, all thirteen water samples are considered hazardous while all calculated chronic daily intakes are greater than arsenic reference dose. Such drinking water source has the potential to impose adverse carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic effects on villagers. Accordingly, an urgent decision must be made to substitute the current drinking water source with a safer one.

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