Special Issue "Water Quality Assessments for Urban Water Environment"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Urban Water Management".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Pankaj Kumar Website E-Mail
Institute for Global Environmental Strategies | IGES · Natural Resources and Ecosystem Services (NRE), Japan
Interests: hydrological modeling; urban water management; wastewater management; sustainable development goals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Worldwide demand for freshwater resources is continuously increasing to satisfy the need for increasing population and growing economies. Further, both biophysical and social patterns and processes are interacting in ways that increase pressure on water and lead to water scarcity. About one-third of the world’s river basins attend their maximum capacity for exploitation, and more than half of the world’s population is directly/indirectly affected by water scarcity. In addition, rapid urbanization in developing countries of Asia, Africa, and South America is one of the prime causes for water quality deterioration in urban waterbodies and, hence, increasing health risk for urban dwellers. One of the main causes for this water scarcity is direct discharge of approximately 85% of all wastewater into water bodies without being properly treated and nonstructured/weak governance policies. It is predicted that with continuous rapid economic growth and urbanization, more than 3.5 billion people will live in cities by the year 2050, which will lead to massive increase in the need for land, food, and water. However, existing sanitation systems and land use management frameworks are inadequate, meaning that without transformational changes, these cities will fall well short in meeting the growing demands for resources. In addition, global changes (urbanization and climate change) will further aggravate the challenges for different entities involved in water planning and management. There are big gaps on scientific studies which report the current status of water quality/quantity and predict its future status based on ‘what-if’ scenarios as well as their best-fitting management options. Delivery of sustainable water supply and sanitation services in growing towns and cities has become a serious issue. Therefore, there is an urgent need for holistic research work which integrates biophysical and social aspects, looking at environmental and human contexts to solve the complex issue of water scarcity/security. Outcomes of such research work in terms of strategies based on scientific evidence, to reduce urban water pollution through better wastewater and land use management practices, will have substantial environmental and economic co-benefits for communities. Finally, how they can contribute to national adaptation plans, which can briefly sketch the appropriate local actions for addressing local climate change impacts.

Based on the aforementioned background information, this Special Issue strives to highlight the gaps, opportunities, and challenges, lessons learned from past experiences for estimating current status and future predictions of water resources in the context of urban spaces/cities, as well as up to what extent scientific innovations have contributed significantly to resolve these issues, and, finally, what the way forward is for the better science-policy we need to create to achieve global goals, e.g., SDGs at local level in a timely manner.

Prof. Pankaj Kumar
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 monthly 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 1600 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.


  • urban water management
  • urban water quality
  • hydrological simulation
  • science–policy interface

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle
Hydrogeochemical Assessment of Groundwater Quality of Mokopane Area, Limpopo, South Africa Using Statistical Approach
Water 2019, 11(9), 1891; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11091891 - 11 Sep 2019
Despite being a finite resource, both the quality and quantity of groundwater are under tremendous pressure due to rapid global changes, viz. population growth, land-use/land-cover changes (LULC), and climate change. The 6th Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) aims to “Ensure availability and sustainable management [...] Read more.
Despite being a finite resource, both the quality and quantity of groundwater are under tremendous pressure due to rapid global changes, viz. population growth, land-use/land-cover changes (LULC), and climate change. The 6th Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) aims to “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”. One of the most significant dimensions of the SDG agenda is the emphasis on data and governance. However, the lack of good governance coupled with good observed data cannot ensure the achievement of SDG6. Therefore, this study strives to evaluate water quality status and hydrochemical processes governing it in the data-scarce Mokopane area of South Africa. Groundwater is the main source of fresh water supply for domestic usage, intensive agriculture, and mining activities in Mokopane. In this study, hydrogeochemical analysis of groundwater samples was employed to calculate the water quality index (WQI) and evaluate factors governing water quality evolution in the study area. Statistical and spatial analysis techniques were carried out to divide sampling sites into clusters and delineate principal factors responsible for determining water quality of the sampled groundwater. Results suggest that most of the physico-chemical parameters are within permissible limits for drinking water set by the World Health Organization (WHO), except for high fluoride in some samples. Na-HCO3 is the most abundant water type followed by Mg-HCO3, which indicates dominance of Na+, Mg2+, and HCO3±. Rock-water interaction is the prime factor responsible for fluoride enrichment in water. The alkaline nature of groundwater favors the release of exchangeable F from minerals like muscovite. The WQI suggests that 80% of water samples fall into the good and excellent categories. Poor management of untreated domestic sewage and agricultural runoff is a main factor for the bad/very bad categories of water samples. As the area lacks any credible scientific/government work to report water quality and its management aspects, the findings of this study will definitely help both scientific communities and policy makers to do what is needed for sustainable water resource management in a timely manner. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Quality Assessments for Urban Water Environment)
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