If you are living near landfill sites in any of the 11 cities surveyed, the underground water is not fit for drinking, says a new government study released on Wednesday.
Samples of underground water from near municipal landfill sites in cities such as Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Srinagar, Thiruvananthapuram, Hyderabad have shown presence of contaminants, which can be harmful for humans.
“The study of borewells surrounding landfill sites indicates that there has been impact on the groundwater quality due to geogenic and anthropogenic reasons,” said the research paper of AB Akolkar and MK Choudhury, senior scientists with the Central Pollution Control Board.
The study is part of a compendium on research work on pollution released by former ISRO head Madhavan Nair.
The main source of ground water pollution from landfill sites is lechate, which is water that passes through decomposed waste heap. In absence of precaution to prevent lechate from percolating, the ground water gets contaminated. To find the impact of contamination, the samples were lifted from a distance up to two kilometers of the landfill site.
In Delhi, the CPCB team took samples from three sites in Gazipur, Okhla and Bhalswa.
While the total dissolved solids was found higher than permissible limits in all samples, heavy metals were found at different sites. Chromium was detected in groundwater of Gazipur dumping site and manganese at Bhalswa whereas these metals were found in less quantity at Okhla, the paper said.