Hydrochemistry and isotopic studies to identify Ganges River and riverbank groundwater interaction, southern Bangladesh

R. K. Majumder, M. A. Halim, J. Shimada, B. B. Saha, A. Zahid, M. Q. Hasan, M. S. Islam

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The Ganges River water and riverbank shallow groundwater were studied during a single wet season using the hydrochemical and isotopic composition of its dissolved load. The dissolved concentrations of major ions (Cl-, SO42-, NO3-, HCO3-, Ca2+, Na+, Mg2+, and K+), trace elements (barium (Ba) and strontium (Sr)) and stable isotopes (O and D) were determined on samples collected from the Ganges River and its riverbank shallow aquifers. In the present study, the shallow groundwater differs significantly from the Ganges River water; it shows distinct high concentrations of Ca2+, Mg2+, HCO3-, Ba, and Sr due to water-rock interaction and this in particular suggests that the Ganges River may not contribute significantly to the riverbank shallow aquifers during wet season. Besides, the sum of the total cationic charge (∑+, in milliequivalents per liter) in the groundwater shows high values (2.48 to 13.91 meq/L, average 9.12 meq/L), which is much higher than the sum of the cations observed in the Ganges water (1.36 to 3.10 meq/L, average 1.94 meq/L). Finally, the more depleted stable isotopic (δ18O and δ2H) compositions of the Ganges River water are in contrast to those of the riverbank aquifer having enriched stable isotopic values during the wet season and the riverbank groundwater thus has a purely local origin from precipitation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4585-4591
Number of pages7
JournalArabian Journal of Geosciences
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2013


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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