Special Issue "Impact of Human Activities on Groundwater Quality"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water Quality and Contamination".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2021).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Călin Baciu
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Environmental Science and Engineering Babeș-Bolyai University of Cluj, Cluj-Napoca, Romania
Interests: hydrogeology; hydrogeochemistry; effects of contaminants on human health, gas geochemistry; natural emission of greenhouse gases, environmental monitoring, environmental impact assessment

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is largely accepted that groundwater resources are becoming more and more threatened by climate change, and by human intervention in the hydrologic cycle. Population growth and economic development amplify the water needs of society, and continuously increase the pressure on the groundwater resources. A large portion of the global population has limited access to good quality water sources, and the situation is worsening as the resources are under stress by overexploitation and by qualitative degradation. The contamination of the groundwater bodies dramatically alters their hydrogeochemical features, as well as their ability to yield good quality water, resulting in a potential negative impact on human health. Moreover, treatment actions for the removal of pollutants are generally costly and technically difficult to implement, while the natural attenuation may take decades or even centuries. New and emerging harmful substances add to the list of potential pollutants, which are ever increasing. Therefore, it is very important to understand the mechanisms of transfer and the fate of the contaminants to the underground environment in order to efficiently diminish the impact of human activity on the groundwater resources.

The Special Issue aims to gather high-quality papers emphasizing different aspects of the impact of human activity on the quality of groundwater.

Proposed topics may refer, but are not limited to, the following: groundwater pollution related to agriculture (application of chemicals to agricultural lands, and disposal of agricultural waste), industry (spills and leaks of chemicals, aerial transported contaminants able to affect the aquifers, and acid mine drainage and related pollution), urban development (wastewater, leachate from landfills, and urban runoff), transportation, and other point and diffuse sources of contaminants.

Submitted contributions will go through a peer review process performed by independent reviewers. Original case studies and review papers are invited for publication in this Special Issue.

Prof. Dr. Călin Baciu
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Water is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • groundwater
  • pollution
  • human impact
  • hydrogeochemistry
  • industry
  • mining
  • agriculture
  • contaminant transport
  • water quality
  • monitoring

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Anthropogenic Organic Pollutants in Groundwater Increase Releases of Fe and Mn from Aquifer Sediments: Impacts of Pollution Degree, Mineral Content, and pH
Water 2021, 13(14), 1920; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13141920 - 12 Jul 2021
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In many aquifers around the world, there exists the issue of abnormal concentrations of Fe and Mn in groundwater. Although it has been recognized that the main source of this issue is the release of Fe and Mn from aquifer sediments into groundwater [...] Read more.
In many aquifers around the world, there exists the issue of abnormal concentrations of Fe and Mn in groundwater. Although it has been recognized that the main source of this issue is the release of Fe and Mn from aquifer sediments into groundwater under natural environmental conditions, there lacks enough reliable scientific evidence to illustrate whether the pollutants imported from anthropogenic activities, such as organics, can increase this natural release. On the basis of time series analysis and comparative analysis, the existence of an increasing effect was verified through laboratorial leaching test, and the impacts of aquatic chemical environment conditions, such as pH, on the effect were also identified. The results showed that the increase of organics in groundwater made the release of Fe and Mn more thorough, which was favorable for the increase of groundwater concentrations of Fe and Mn. The higher the contents of Fe- and Mn-bearing minerals in aquifer sediments, the higher the concentrations of Fe and Mn in groundwater after the release reaches kinetic equilibrium. Lower pH can make the leaching more thorough, but the neutral environment also increases the amount of Mn. It can be deduced that the pollutants such as organics imported by anthropogenic activities can indeed increase the releases of Fe and Mn from aquifer sediments into groundwater, thus worsening the issue of groundwater Fe and Mn pollution. The findings provide a deeper insight into the geochemical effects of Fe and Mn in the natural environment, especially in the groundwater system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Impact of Human Activities on Groundwater Quality)
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