Groundwater is a critical natural resource across the Indo-Gangetic Basin, sustaining agricultural productivity, industry and livelihoods for millions of people. The sedimentary aquifer is used extensively for irrigation and is also an important source of drinking water in growing urban centres. However, this resource is being impacted by anthropogenic activities leading to groundwater pollution, and falling groundwater tables in some regions. It is therefore important to establish an understanding of the spatial variation of the baseline water quality status of groundwater bodies in this heavily impacted aquifer. In this pilot study we have investigated the water quality of both the shallow (50 m deep) aquifers at (19) paired sites across the Bist-Doab catchment (9060 km2) in Northwest Punjab, India. This paper includes samples collected during February and May in 2013. Groundwater samples were analysed for a suite of major and trace elements as well as field parameters. Preliminary results from across the catchment are presented and the variations in baseline chemistry assessed in both the shallow and deep sedimentary aquifers.
Gopal Krishan; Lapworth, D.J.; Someshwar Rao, M.; Kumar, C.P.; Smilovic, M.; Semwal, P. Natural (baseline) groundwater quality in the Bist-Doab catchment, Punjab, India: a pilot study comparing shallow and deep aquifers. International Journal of Earth Science and Engineering (2014) :