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Tuesday, May 8 • 8:00am - 5:00pm
POSTER: Arsenic: Watery Do Now?

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AUTHORS: Luke Davis*, Eastern Connecticut State University; Meredith Metcalf, Eastern Connecticut State University

ABSTRACT: Arsenic is a life threatening substance that has become more prevalent in drinking water wells of New England. Many studies have suggested that the source of arsenic is directly related to the bedrock, however there has been no statistical evidence to support these findings. This objective of this study was to determine whether arsenic in groundwater was more likely to occur in discharge areas which would support that arsenic occurrences were naturally occurring. In cooperation with the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the Connecticut Department of Public Health, a random distribution of bedrock wells throughout Pomfret were sampled and analyzed for water quality parameters which included arsenic. Common water quality parameters and the distance between wells and discharge areas were evaluated using multivariate regression to determine which factors, if any, were significant in predicting observed arsenic concentrations. Forty-three percent of the wells tested positive for arsenic; 20% of the wells had arsenic concentrations exceeding the EPA drinking water standard of 10 micrograms per liter. Although the wells sampled were randomly distributed across Pomfret, the distance between the wells and discharge areas was the only statistically significant variable and explained 18.2% of the observed arsenic concentrations. Additionally, wells with arsenic occurred when water quality conditions showed dissolved oxygen concentrations were high and oxidation reduction potentials were positive which suggests that arsenic would mostly likely occur in recharge areas. In conclusion, the observed arsenic concentrations in Pomfret are most likely explained by anthropogenic sources rather than naturally occurring.

Tuesday May 8, 2018 8:00am - 5:00pm EDT
Laurel/McHugh Hall First Floor

Attendees (1)