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Article

High-Arsenic Groundwater in Paleochannels of the Lower Yellow River, China: Distribution and Genesis Mechanisms

by 1,2, 1,2,*, 3 and 1,2
1
The Institute of Hydrogeology and Environmental Geology, CAGS, Shijiazhuang 050061, Hebei Province, China
2
Key Laboratory of Groundwater Contamination and Remediation of Hebei Province and China Geological Survey, Zhengding 050083, Hebei Province, China
3
School of Water Resources and Environment Engineering, East China University of Technology, Nanchang 330032, Jiangxi Province, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Kristine Walraevens
Water 2021, 13(3), 338; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13030338
Received: 30 November 2020 / Revised: 8 January 2021 / Accepted: 26 January 2021 / Published: 29 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
High–arsenic (As) groundwater poses a serious threat to human health. The upper and middle reaches of the Yellow River are well–known areas for the enrichment of high–arsenic groundwater. However, little is known about the distribution characteristics and formation mechanism of high-As groundwater in the lower reach of the Yellow River. There were 203 groundwater samples collected in different groundwater systems of the lower Yellow River for the exploration of its hydrogeochemical characteristics. Results showed that more than 20% of the samples have arsenic concentrations exceeding 10 μg/L. The high-As groundwater was mainly distributed in Late Pleistocene–Holocene aquifers, and the As concentrations in the paleochannels systems (C2 and C4) were significantly higher than that of the paleointerfluve system (C3) and modern Yellow River affected system (C5). The high-As groundwater is characterized by high Fe2+ and NH4+ and low Eh and NO3, indicating that reductive dissolution of the As–bearing iron oxides is probably the main cause of As release. The arsenic concentrations strikingly showed an increasing tendency as the HCO3 proportion increases, suggesting that HCO3 competitive adsorption may facilitate As mobilization, too. In addition, a Gibbs diagram showed that the evaporation of groundwater could be another significant hydrogeochemical processes, except for the water–rock interaction in the study area. Different sources of aquifer medium and sedimentary structure may be the main reasons for the significant zonation of the As spatial distribution in the lower Yellow River. View Full-Text
Keywords: arsenic; paleochannels; lower Yellow River; groundwater; reductive release arsenic; paleochannels; lower Yellow River; groundwater; reductive release
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhi, C.; Cao, W.; Wang, Z.; Li, Z. High-Arsenic Groundwater in Paleochannels of the Lower Yellow River, China: Distribution and Genesis Mechanisms. Water 2021, 13, 338. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13030338

AMA Style

Zhi C, Cao W, Wang Z, Li Z. High-Arsenic Groundwater in Paleochannels of the Lower Yellow River, China: Distribution and Genesis Mechanisms. Water. 2021; 13(3):338. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13030338

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zhi, Chuanshun, Wengeng Cao, Zhen Wang, and Zeyan Li. 2021. "High-Arsenic Groundwater in Paleochannels of the Lower Yellow River, China: Distribution and Genesis Mechanisms" Water 13, no. 3: 338. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13030338

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