Hydrogeochemical Characteristics and Human Health Risk Assessment of Fluoride Enrichment in Water in Faulted Basins of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau—A Case Study of Sanhe Plain in Guide Basin
2. Geological Setting
3. Hydrogeological Characteristics
3.1. The Water-Bearing Rock Includes Four Essential Groups
- Loose Rock Pore Group:
- Clastic Rock Fissure Pore Group:
- Granite Fissure Group:
- Frozen Layer of Water:
3.2. Groundwater Conditions (Recharge, Diameter, and Discharge)
- Porewater (Groundwater):
- Pore fissure water:
- Fissure water:
- Frozen layer water
4. Occurrence of Geothermal Water
4.1. Fracture Convection Geothermal Water
4.2. Sedimentary Basin Geothermal Water
- The Neogene thermal reservoir cap is approximately 160~240 m thick, while the thermal reservoir section is approximately 180 m thick. The water content mostly is good, and the orifice temperature is approximately 18.5~28 °C, reaching 34.6 °C. In contrast, the geothermal gradient is generally approximately 6.67~9.70 °C/100 m, which is the low-temperature thermal reservoir.
- The buried roof depth of the Paleogene thermal reservoir cap is between 1200 and 1500 m, and the thickness of the thermal reservoir section is approximately 600~800 m, with good water-rich properties and high temperature.
- The buried top plate depth of Cretaceous and Jurassic thermal reservoirs is 2700~3400 m, and the thickness of thermal reservoirs is 1000~1600 m. The poor property of water and the low temperature of the thermal fluid can be attributed to the lack of water and heat . More than 20 exploratory and mining combined hydrogeological boreholes with a depth of 200~600 m have been established out in the Guide area. The revealed confined artesian water of fissures and pores of clastic rocks in the basin mainly occurs in the Guide Group of Neogene, and the water-bearing rock group is composed of multiple aquifers, with complex distribution and water abundance. The confined artesian water mainly occurs in the siltstone of the Zhongyan Formation .
6. Results and Discussion
6.1. Hydrochemistry and Water Quality Assessment
6.2. Hydrogeochemical and Their Influencing Factors
6.2.1. Dominant Zones of Hydrogeochemical Process
6.2.2. Impacts of pH
6.2.3. Hydrochemical Environment
6.2.4. Saturation Index of Minerals
6.3. Health Implication of Fluoride in Water
- As indicated by the analysis of the Gibbs diagram concerning fluoride, the fluoride in groundwater is mainly related to the water–rock interaction. These geothermal waters may be mixed with near-surface cold water.
- The hydrogeochemical factors of fluoride enrichment in confined geothermal water mainly include specific natural factors, such as pH, ion exchange, and mineral saturation.
- The groundwater in the study area is slightly alkaline compared with the drinking water quality standards of China and the WHO. The confined water in the Guide basin presents high fluoride concentration (0.43–5.7 mg/L), while phreatic water and surface water present fluoride levels that are too low to drink. It is suggested that for Department of Water Resources Management that when confined geothermal water is used as drinking water, it should be mixed with phreatic water and surface water in a certain proportion to make the fluoride in groundwater reach the range of safe drinking water.
- Excessive fluoride in drinking confined geothermal water will cause health risks in adults and children. According to this study, fluoride is an element that causes great risks to human health over time in general. The HQ highest value of fluoride in confined geothermal water was 5.28. Meanwhile, children face higher health risks than adults caused by water drinking intake. Therefore, measures should be taken to ensure the health and safety of residents. Human health requires a groundwater fluoride concentration of less than 0.5 mg/L, which offers greater protection. This provides a reference basis for water management.
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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|Ci||Contaminant concentration in water||USEPA 2017|
|IR||Daily intake of drinking water||1.0 L/d||0.6 L/d|
|EF||Exposure frequency||365 days||365 days|
|ED||Exposure duration||12 years||25 years|
|BW||Body weight||15.9 kg||56.8 kg|
|AT||Average time for noncarcinogenic effect||4380 days||9125 days|
|RFD||non-carcinogenic reference dose of F− through oral intake||0.03 mg/(kg·d)||0.06 mg/(kg·d)|
|Index||TDS (mg/L)||pH||T||Na+ + K+ (mg/L)||Ca2+ (mg/L)||Mg2+ (mg/L)||Cl− (mg/L)||SO42− (mg/L)||HCO3− (mg/L)||F− (mg/L)|
|pH||1||−0.664 **||−0.669 **||−0.737 **||−0.316||−0.737 **||−0.079||−0.163||−0.151|
|K+||1||0.616 **||0.823 **||0.364 *||0.772 **||−0.005||0.110||0.194|
|Na+||1||0.411 *||0.469 **||0.699 **||0.004||0.635 **||0.583 **|
|Mg2+||1||0.410 *||−0.208||0.526 **||0.125|
|Health Risks for |
|Health Risks for Adults|
|Confined Geothermal water||31||Average||4.12||1.62|
|Health Risks for |
|Health Risks for Adults|
|Confined Geothermal water||31||Average||1.67||0.78|
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Liu, R.; Liu, F.; Xu, Y.; Zhu, H.; Jiao, J.; El-Wardany, R.M. Hydrogeochemical Characteristics and Human Health Risk Assessment of Fluoride Enrichment in Water in Faulted Basins of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau—A Case Study of Sanhe Plain in Guide Basin. Water 2023, 15, 1968. https://doi.org/10.3390/w15101968
Liu R, Liu F, Xu Y, Zhu H, Jiao J, El-Wardany RM. Hydrogeochemical Characteristics and Human Health Risk Assessment of Fluoride Enrichment in Water in Faulted Basins of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau—A Case Study of Sanhe Plain in Guide Basin. Water. 2023; 15(10):1968. https://doi.org/10.3390/w15101968Chicago/Turabian Style
Liu, Ruiping, Fei Liu, Youning Xu, Hua Zhu, Jiangang Jiao, and Refaey M. El-Wardany. 2023. "Hydrogeochemical Characteristics and Human Health Risk Assessment of Fluoride Enrichment in Water in Faulted Basins of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau—A Case Study of Sanhe Plain in Guide Basin" Water 15, no. 10: 1968. https://doi.org/10.3390/w15101968