Sustainable Water Resources Management

, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp 1877–1886 | Cite as

Drinking water quality and health risk analysis in the mining impact zone, Armenia

  • Gayane BabayanEmail author
  • Astghik Sakoyan
  • Gevorg Sahakyan
Original Article


The major mining centers of Armenia are concentrated in the south of the country. In this region, the source of centralized drinking water supply to towns and rural settlements is surface water. Water is withdrawn from minor mountain rivers belonging to the Voghchi and Meghri basin, water treatment is done at five water treatment plants (WTPs). Heavy metals were not determined in the studied rivers and drinking water during the past 35 years. As shown, natural waters throughout the region are under the impact of the assemblages of deposits and mining facilities. Evidence to the current unfavorable situation is low-quality river water, insufficient water treatment at WTPs, secondary water pollution in distribution systems, the increased level of maximum allowable chronic carcinogenic risk exceeds a safety limit by arsenic (CR = 9.59 × 10−5). Ecological problems of the region can affect the quality of life of urban and rural residents in South Armenia in terms of using heavy metal-polluted river water in irrigation as well as per oral and dermal effects of drinking water on human organism.


Drinking water Heavy metals Mine pollution Health risk assessment 



This research was done in the frames of a project “Assessment of Mining Impact on the Quality of Surface Sources of Drinking Water Supplied to Towns of Kapan, Kajaran, Meghri and Agarak” under financial support of the State Committee for Science to the Ministry of Education and Science RA (Grant 15T-1E091).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Ecological-Noosphere Studies (CENS) NAS RAYerevanArmenia

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