Groundwater Contamination Study of Faisalabad and Sargodha Metropolitan Cities
The groundwater is one of the most important sources for fulfilling daily needs. Groundwater for
drinking purposes is the biggest source in Pakistan, but due to population explosion, the rapid
development of industrialization, deforestation, urbanization and unplanned housing schemes on
agricultural lands are the major reasons for groundwater contamination and deterioration. The
work emphasized evaluating the physicochemical characteristics of the groundwater of the two
cities of Punjab, Faisalabad and Sargodha for drinking purposes. Overall thirty samples were
collected in triplicate, fifteen from each city, Faisalabad and Sargodha, respectively.
Physicochemical parameters, trace elements and microbiological analysis were conducted. The
results revealed that the quantities of Magnesium (Mg), Calcium (Ca), Sodium (Na), Chloride
(Cl), and TDS were significantly higher than the permissible limits of WHO in the majority of the
samples from Sargodha, while TDS, TH, were higher in most samples of Faisalabad. The studied
trace elements Aluminum (Al), Chromium (Cr), Arsenic (As), Manganese (Mn), Iron (Fe), Cobalt
(Co), Nickel (Ni), Copper (Cu), Zinc (Zn), Selenium (Se), Cadmium (Cd), and Lead (Pb) were
found under safe limits of WHO except Cr, Cd, Se and Mn in Sargodha city and in Faisalabad Se
and Cd were found to be crossing WHO levels in few locations. The samples from Faisalabad
were found microbiologically unsafe as compared to Sargodha. Principal component analysis
(PCA) revealed that the area's most dominant anion was chloride. Many processes are involved in
changing water chemistry, and the water quality was controlled by rock water interaction and
evaporation procedures. The study concluded that the area's water was brackish; due to this, the
water was found unsuitable for drinking purposes. Therefore, the supply of safe water and water
treatment plant installations are highly recommended in these areas.
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