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A novel approach to baseline water quality assessment at local and catchment scale: a case study from Berambadi, India

Raj, AV and Jamwal, P and Anju, AK and Kumar, P and Biswas, D and Rao, L and Helliwell, R and Richards, S and Ellis, R and Koseoglu, N and Yeluripati, J and Connelly, S (2021) A novel approach to baseline water quality assessment at local and catchment scale: a case study from Berambadi, India. In: Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 193 (12).

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10661-021-09617-7


Optimal design and maintenance are necessary for the sustainability of wastewater treatment systems. In this study, we present the outcome of a novel approach to baseline assessment conducted prior to the design and deployment of a decentralized wastewater treatment system at a school in rural India. The baseline water quality monitoring protocol was deployed to assess (a) the quality and quantity of wastewater (greywater and blackwater) flows from the school and (b) the status of surface water and groundwater quality in the catchment. Hourly greywater flows and water quality trends were monitored across four seasons at the school. Average freshwater consumption at the school was 518 ± 322 L/day for hand washing and 287 ± 97 L/day for cooking meals. Greywater generation showed high hourly variations in COD levels. Greywater generated from hand wash and kitchen sources contributed to 110 g/day and 96 g/day of BOD5 respectively and 214 g/day and 141 g/day of COD respectively. Based on additional data from a self-reporting sanitation survey, the organic contaminant load generated from the toilet was estimated to be 1.5 ± 0.1 kg COD/day. At the catchment scale, both groundwater and surface water quality were monitored seasonally to assess the impact of raw sewage and stormwater inputs. Compared with borewells, high nitrate�N levels (> 10 mg/L) were observed in the village hand pump samples throughout the year. Maximum nitrate�N (16 mg/L) and fecal coliforms (3.9 log MPN/100 mL) levels were observed in surface waters during monsoons, indicating the impact of sewage and surface runoff on water quality. The proposed approach is useful to estimate data on freshwater use and wastewater generation at the school and hence to make the case for, and design of, a sustainable water management intervention. Graphic abstract: Figure not available: see fulltext. © 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Environmental Monitoring and Assessment
Publisher: Springer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to Springer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Keywords: Catchments; Groundwater; Groundwater pollution; Nitrates; Runoff; Sewage; Sustainable development; Wastewater treatment; Water conservation; Water quality; Water supply, Baseline assessment; Catchment scale; Contaminant loads; Decentralized wastewater; Decentralized wastewater treatment; Greywater; Seasonal variation; Surface water quality; Wastewater treatment system; Water consumption, Rural areas
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Centre for Sustainable Technologies (formerly ASTRA)
Date Deposited: 21 Dec 2021 05:49
Last Modified: 21 Dec 2021 05:49
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/70678

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