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A Case Study On Predicting The Environmental Impacts Of Untreated Effluent Generated From Tannery Industrial Estate In Dhaka, Bangladesh

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Significant amounts of heavy metals in the directly discharged wastewater released from the newly built tannery industrial site in Dhaka, Bangladesh are reported. Despite their detrimental impacts on public health and natural ecosystem, no environmental impact study is yet conducted. Therefore, information on safe discharge rates are not available. In this study, the extent of pollution around the industrial site is investigated for four representative trace metals. Temporal and spatial distributions of chromium (Cr), lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd) and arsenic (As) have been predicted using a numerical model with the aim to estimate safe discharge of these metal contaminants. From multiple simulation runs it has been estimated that a discharge of0.026 m3 of wastewater per day can lead to high levels of Cr and Pb accumulation, exceeding the regulatory standard limits, in the study area. Whilst As and Cd concentrations remain below the advised limits in most cases at this rate. However, an order of magnitude reduction in the total discharge rate, i.e.,0.0026 m3 per day, results into the metal accumulation below the recommended guidelines in all cases. Elevated concentration of Pb is found to be limited to the top 0.5 m of the soil as compared to Cr, As and Cd, which exhibit larger spread along the depth of the soil. The relative dominance of the metal contamination follows the sequence: Pb>Cr>As>Cd as sorbed concentration in soil aggregates and Cr>Pb>As>Cd as aqueous concentration in soil porewater. Further investigations that are essential for a comprehensive environmental impact assessment have been highlighted.

About the Authors

Shakil A. Masum
School of Engineering, Cardiff University
United Kingdom
Cardiff, CF24 3AA

Md. Sultanul Islam
Daffodil International University

Faculty of Engineering



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For citation:

Masum S.A., Islam M.S. A Case Study On Predicting The Environmental Impacts Of Untreated Effluent Generated From Tannery Industrial Estate In Dhaka, Bangladesh. GEOGRAPHY, ENVIRONMENT, SUSTAINABILITY. 2020;13(3):22-31.

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ISSN 2071-9388 (Print)
ISSN 2542-1565 (Online)