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CE - Interna
ational Jourrnal for Envvironmentaal Rehabilitaation and Conservation
Volume V: No. 2 2014 [3
35 – 40] [ISS
SN 0975 - 62722]

Proceedings of
o National Coonference
“Environmental Conserrvation and Cllean India Proogramme” Deccember 2014, India

Water pollution
p caused
c byy heavy meetals and resulting
r h
hazards foor human health

Bharti Khare
K , Arun Kher2, S. K. Sharmaa3, Tripta Saapru4, Shaku
un Mishra5 and S. K. Mahajan
M 6

Received: October 12, 2014 ⏐ Acceepted: Decem

mber 04, 20144 ⏐ Online: December
D 31, 2014


Abstractt Intrroduction

The present commu unication deals

d with the
t Thee future of anny nation deepends on thee health,
human hazards
h due to water poollution caussed prossperity and progress of o the forthhcoming
by heavyy metals and d due to thee establishment genneration. I
In the present e
era of
of cottonn and chem mical industtries in Nimmar induustrializationn and develoopment, one concern
eco-regioon of Madh hya Pradeshh, the harm mful shouuld be the health
h of the future genneration.
effects of
o water polllution on vaarious cropss is Whhen water is i impaired by anthroopogenic
briefly diiscussed. conntaminants anda either does
d not suupport a
humman use likee serving as drinking waater and/
or undergoes
u a marked shhift in its abbility to
suppport a bioticc communityy such as fiish, then
Keyword ds: Anthro opogenic coontaminantss | suchh type of water
w is connsidered as polluted
toxicity | Industrial wastes
w | Nim
mar eco-regioon | (Daahiya et al, 2005).
2 Volcaanoes, algal blooms,
Panwa viillage storrms and earthquakes are some of thee natural
phenomena, whichw cause major chaanges in
watter quality and
a ecologiccal status of water.
Watter pollutionn is the conttamination of o water
boddies (e.g. lakes, rivers, oceans,
For corresp
grouundwater), which
w affectss plants and animals
Botany Deepartment, M.L.BB. Girls P.G. College, Bhopal
Botany Deepartment, Holkaar Science P.G. College,
C Indore livinng in these bodies. In almost
a all caases, the
Chemistry Department, S.BB.N. Govt. P.G. College, Barwaani, effeect is damaaging eitherr to the inndividual
Botany Deepartment, Govt. Girls College, Ujjain
Botany Deepartment, S.N. Govt.
G P.G. Colleege, Khandwa speccies and poppulations buut also to thee natural
Professor of
o Botany, Govt.. P.G. College, Khargone
K biollogical com mmunities. Water pollutionp
occuurs when poollutants are discharged directly

Khare et al. /Vol. V [2] 20014 /35 – 40 

or indirrectly into water boodies withoout effeects even at very low concentrationns. They
adequatee treatmentt to rem
move harm mful tendd to accumulate in the foood chain annd in the
compounnds. boddy and can bee stored in sooft (e.g. kidnney) and
hardd tissues (ee.g. bone). Being metaals they
In fact, water
w pollution is a majjor problem m in
exisst in a positively chargedd form and canc bind
the globaal context. Itt has been suuggested thaat it
the negatively charged orrganic moleccules to
is the leaading worlddwide cause of deaths and a
formm complexees. . Sincee no such research r
diseases accounting forf the deathhs of more thhan
worrk has been done in this tribal regionn, hence
14,000 people
p daily. It has beenn estimated thhat
the present inveestigation haas been takenn up.
700 milliion Indians have
h no access to a propper
toilet andd 1000 Indiaan children die
d of diarrheeas Maaterials and method
sickness every day. Some 90% % China citties This investigation was doone during the t year
suffer froom some deg gree of wateer pollution and
a 20009-10 and inn this connecction Panwaa village
nearly 5000 million people
p lack access to safe andd its surrounnding areas were surveyyed and
drinking water. infoormation waas gathered with
w referencce to the
Metallic elements possessing high atom mic advverse effectts of cottton and chemicalc
weight annd much greeater densityy (5 times) thhan induustries on cootton and whheat crops. In
I Table
water, arre known ass heavy meetals. Althouugh 1 maximum
m percentage concentrations in
there aree more than 20 heavy metals,
m but onnly pubblic water supplies haas been shhown as
four are of particularr concern too human heaalth recoommended by EPA (1976). Table T 2
e.g. Leadd (Pb), Cadm mium (Cd), Mercury (H Hg) indiicates the human
h hazaards due too water
and inorgganic Arsen nic (As). Acccording to thet polllution causeed by diffeerent heavyy metals
U.S. Ageency for tox xic substancees and diseases withh their sourcce, lethal dosse and sympptoms of
Registry,, these four heavy metaals are four of the disease. Taable 3 indicates the parrameters
the top siix hazards present
p in toxxic waste sittes. for the elemeental measuurements by AAS
They aree highly toxiic and can caause damagiing (Daahiya et al, 2005).

Metaal Symboll Maaximum perrmissible cooncentration

µ g/l µ molles/l
Merccury Hg 2 0.01
Cadmmium Cd 10 0.09
Lead Pb 50 0.24
Arsennic As 50 0.67
Mangganese Mn 50 0.91
Zinc Zn 5000 76.49
Table 1: Maximmum permissibble concentratiions in
public water supplies as recomm mended
by EPAA (1976) 
Khare et al. /Vol. V [2] 20014 /35 – 40 

S. No. N
Name of Source of
o Leethal dose Symptom
metal pollution
1 Mercury
M Industriall 0.55 to 1.0 g Central peripheral
p nervous systemm disorder,
(Inorganic dischargee renal failuure, blurred vision, num
mbness of
a organic)) vapour
and limbs, lipps muscles ettc.
2 L
Lead Industriall Leess particles If inhaledd, then are daangerous, innfertility
waste, poolluted thaan 2 u and lassittude, nervouus disorder, renal
food, painnt diaameter failure, bllood poison and anemic,,
3 C
Cadmium Industriall 1 mg
m to 4 mg Fatal, rennal pulmonarry and skelettal
dischargee, dust, / m3 diseases, protonuria, glucosuria, increased
fumes, poolluted salivationn kidney neccrosis nauseaa , vomiting
water headachee, shock, chest pain, bronnchial
4 A
Arsenic Polluted water
w , - Haemolyytic poison, renal
r failure and death,
industriall waste, liver and kidney dam mage, muscullar atrophy,
medicinaal use gastrointeestinal damaage, nervous disorder,
respiratorry and skin cancer
5 N
Nickel Aerosols, - Pulmonarry disorder, dermatitis ettc.
industriall dust
6 C
Chromium Industriall waste - Respiratoory disorder including caancer
, fumes
7 Tin
T Industriall dust, - Central nervous
n systeem disorder, vision and
(Organic medicinaal use pneumoconiosis
inorganic )
8 C
Copper Earth minnes More than 2 Poisonouus
9 I
Iron Earth minnes - Pollute water
w bodies
10 Z
Zinc Earth minnes More than 2 Poisonouus, affects invvertebrate annimals like
pppm snails andd insects

Table 2: Human hazarrds due to waater pollution

caused by heeavy metals 

Elementt Wavee length (nm

m) Bandd width (nm
m) Flaame Sensitivityy(ug/Ml)
Cadmiumm 228.8 0.5 Airr-C2H2 0.009
Nickel 232.00 0.2 Airr-C2H2 0.04
Lead 217.00 1.0 Airr-C2H2 0.10
Table 3: Parameters
P for the elemental measurements
by AAS (Dahiyya et al, 2005)

Khare et al. /Vol. V [2] 20014 /35 – 40 

Results and
a Discusssion sluddge and wastte water. Caddmium intooxication
can lead to kidney,
k bonne and pulmonary
Heavy metals
m like Mercury,
M Leead, Cadmiuum,
dammages (Schhroeder,19655: WHO,1984 &
Nickel, Chromium
C an nd Tin generrally presentt in
19991: FAO/WH HO,1993 & 2001).
industrial wastes aree the main reasons,
r which
create serious
s waater pollutiion probleems As regards Arsenic,
A it possesses smooth
(Clementts et al, 1980; Smartt & Sherlock, meddicinal as well as toxic properties. Arsenic
1987; Seelvapathy & Sarala Devvi, 1995). The T is found
f a soils in various
in nattural rocks and
sources of o mercury pollution arre the chlorine partts of the world. It leaks in water annd found
producinng plants situ uated on the banks of rivver. in thhe form of organic
o arsennic (methyl arsenate,
It has been
b estimated that soome 250 g of dim
methyl arsenate). This is due to oxxidation,
mercury are released d into the water
w for eveery reduuction, methhylate and demethylate
d e cycles,
tonne off chlorine produced. Thhis mercuryy is whiich operatee in the environmeent and
convertedd into metthyl mercurry due to the t orgaanisms.
activity of
o anaerobicc bacteria, which
w dissolvves Zinc affects innvertebrate animals likke snails
in water and enters through
t the food chain viav andd insects annd acts as a poison in high
phytoplannkton Æ zooplanktton Æ fish f conncentration. During mining
m opperations
respectivvely. During g this processs the level of abanndoned coppper and iroon ore minees create
mercury is magnified d at every staage of transffer. probblems unlesss covered wiith earth.
It is finaally depositeed in fish. When
W man eats
fish, this mercury enters his body, which Althhough Coppper in the concentration
c n of 0.5
creates human haazards (Kriishnamurti & ppmm is effectivvely used to t keep ponnds free
Pushpa, 1991)
1 from
m algae but beyonnd 2 ppm m, Cu
conncentration iss a poison. Fish
F can survvive in 1
Similarlyy millions off tons of leadd are producced ppmm and man can c tolerate up to 2 ppmm of Cu
as a bypproduct of silver
s refininng. Lead saalts conncentration.
give a sweet tastee to foodss and retarrds
decompoosition. Thiss is due to the fact thhat Duee to the aerial oxidationn of iron pyyrites in
when foood stuffs or fruit syrupss are concealed pressence of waater hydrateed ferric oxxide and
in lead-liined pots annd over a fiire and stirrred, a producedd, which are washed
hyddrogen ions are
then theyy give a sweeet taste (FAOO/WHO, 19889; awaay during rainy
r seasonn and then pollute
Dahiya et
e al, 2005). watter bodies

Cadmium m occurs in the earth crrust with Zinc, In Nimar

N eco-region theree are four districts
Lead-Zinnc and Lead d-Copper-Ziinc ores. It is nam
mely Barwanni, Khargonne , Khanddwa and
ng of metalss as a pigment
used for electroplatin Burrhanpur disttricts. This region is mainly
and as stabilizer
s in
n plastic maaterials. Aboout knoown for the production
p o cotton annd wheat
2000 tonnes of Cd perr year are reeleased into the
t cropps. One of thhe biggest riivers of Indiia called
ment from th he Cd- induustry as fum mes, Narrmada river passes from m here Thereefore the
soill of this paarticular reggion is beinng very
Khare et al. /Vol. V [2] 20014 /35 – 40 

fertile. Because
B of large scale production of alsoo cause a varriety of diseaases.
cotton crrop, various cotton
c indusstries as welll as
chemicall industries have been established in
different parts of this region. But theese Autthors are thaankful to thee Principal of
o Govt.
industries are not haaving properr pollution anda Hollkar Sciencee College, Inndore and S. S B. N.
environm mental contrrol measure systems. The T Govvt. P.G. College,
C Baarwani (M..P.) for
farmers of this areaa are facingg problems in provviding librarry facilities.
agricultuure because of acid raain and liquuid Refferences
wastes coming
c from
m factories. Recently the t
ments, G.F.,, Cinga Rossi, L., Santaaroni, G.
crops in Panwa villlage and itts surroundiing P. (19800): In:Nriagu, J.O.(ed..)), Nickel
areas up to 5 km have been spooiled due to air in Envirronment, Nickel
Ni in Fooods and
and watter pollution n created byb three main dietary intake of Nickel.
industries of cloth h and cheemical. Theese and Sonns,New Yorkk, pp. 493-4998.
industries are using heavy metals and harm mful
Dahhiya, S., Karpe,
K R., Hegde,
H A. G. and
gases inn their prod duction unitts which haave Sharma,, R. M. (20005): Lead, Cadmium
become a main causee of these daamages. Peopple and Nicckel in choccolates and candies
living inn nearby areeas are gettinng water froom from subburban areas of Mumbaai, India,
well andd ponds. Bu ur these watter sources are Journal of Food Compositioon and
also polluted by wastew cominng from theese Analysiss, 18:517-5222.
factories.. In 2004-055 nearly 201 hectare areaa of FAO
O/WHO (19989): Toxicological Evvaluation
crop wass spoiled duee to water poollution creatted of cerrtain foodd additivees and
by such factories.
f Maadhya Pradeesh government contamiinants, WH
HO Food Additive
paid rupeees 6.69 lacs to affectedd farmers. This
T Series, 24,
2 Geneva.
figure iss increased in 2009-10 up to rupeees
O/WHO (19993): Evaluaation of Certain food
18.052 laacs. additivees and coontaminants, WHO
Apart froom this, latest studies haveh indicatted Techniccal Report Seeries, 837, Geneva.
that adveerse effects of heavy metals
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O/WHO (22001): Draaft Standarrds for
are in thhe form of renal
r tubularr damage but b Chocolaates and chocolate
c p
they alsoo effect on bone
b and fraacture at low
wer Joint FAO/WH HO Sttandards
exposuree levels. Methyl
M mercuury in geneeral Program
mme, Codeex Committtee on
does noot affect health off the pubblic Cocoa Productss and Cocoa
significanntly, althoug
gh certain grroups with hiigh Chocolaates, 19 Seession, 3-5 October,
2001, Fribourg,
F Sw
witzerland, CX/CPC
fish connsumption may m attain blood levvels
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damage to t adults. Recently
R it is
i also claim
med Krisshnamurti, C.
C R., (1991): Toxic metals
m in
that denttal amalgamss made from m mercury may
m the Indian Environm
ment, Tata McGraw
–Hill, New
N Delhi, p.161.

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