Next Article in Journal
Impact of Boundary Conditions on a Groundwater Heat Pump System Design in a Shallow and Thin Aquifer near the River
Next Article in Special Issue
Determination of the Suitability of Some American Grapevine Rootstocks as a New Edible Landscape Component of Vertical Gardens
Previous Article in Journal
Analysis of the Effectiveness of Urban Land-Use-Change Models Based on the Measurement of Spatio-Temporal, Dynamic Urban Growth: A Cellular Automata Case Study
Previous Article in Special Issue
Redistributing Phosphorus in Animal Manure from a Livestock-Intensive Region to an Arable Region: Exploration of Environmental Consequences
Article Menu
Issue 5 (May) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Sustainability 2017, 9(5), 799;

A Grey Water Footprint Assessment of Groundwater Chemical Pollution: Case Study in Salento (Southern Italy)

Department of Economics and Management, University of Salento, Prov. le Lecce-Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy
Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences and Technologies, University of Salento, Prov. le Lecce-Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy
Consorzio Interuniversitario di Ricerca in Chimica dei Metalli nei Sistemi Biologici, via Celso Ulpiani 27, 70125 Bari, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marc A. Rosen
Received: 5 April 2017 / Revised: 3 May 2017 / Accepted: 9 May 2017 / Published: 11 May 2017
Full-Text   |   PDF [1375 KB, uploaded 11 May 2017]   |  


The worsening of groundwater quality is a huge problem for some regions, especially where a karst aquifer system is the most important water resource because of the deficiency of a well-developed superficial water supply. In this study the chemical quality of a deep aquifer of the Salento peninsula (Southern Italy), where a shallow aquifer and an extensive deep aquifer are exploited as a source of drinking water and irrigation water, was monitored. The indicator used to assess the sustainability of pollution produce by human activities is the “grey water footprint” (GWF) which measures the amount of water required to assimilate a polluting load produced from anthropic activity. The GWF, calculated for each chemical parameter, shows a widespread contamination by Mercury (Hg), Vanadium (V) and Ammonium (NH4+) with concentrations above the limits (Lgs. D. 31/2001). The high Mercury and Vanadium concentrations may thus be associated with anthropic pressures on the aquifer, while Ammonium derives mainly from fertilizers used in agriculture. The situation that emerged involves reflections on the continuous human pressure on natural resources. Therefore, the management of groundwater quality requires a multidisciplinary approach focused on identifying the measures necessary to protect our water resources. View Full-Text
Keywords: grey water footprint; groundwater; pollution grey water footprint; groundwater; pollution

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Miglietta, P.P.; Toma, P.; Fanizzi, F.P.; De Donno, A.; Coluccia, B.; Migoni, D.; Bagordo, F.; Serio, F. A Grey Water Footprint Assessment of Groundwater Chemical Pollution: Case Study in Salento (Southern Italy). Sustainability 2017, 9, 799.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Sustainability EISSN 2071-1050 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top