Water Quality, Exposure and Health

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 503–513 | Cite as

Spatial Distribution of Sulfate Concentration in Groundwater of South-Punjab, Pakistan

  • Naima Mubarak
  • Ijaz HussainEmail author
  • Muhammad Faisal
  • Tajammal Hussain
  • Muhammad Yousaf Shad
  • Nasser M. AbdEl-Salam
  • Javid Shabbir
Original Paper


Sulfate causes various health issues for human if on average daily intake of sulfate is more than 500 mg from drinking-water, air, and food. Moreover, the presence of sulfate in rainwater causes acid rains which has harmful effects on animals and plants. Food is the major source of sulfate intake; however, in areas of South-Punjab, Pakistan, the drinking-water containing high levels of sulfate may constitute the principal source of intake. The spatial behavior of sulfate in groundwater is recorded for South-Punjab province, Pakistan. The spatial dependence of the response variable (sulfate) is modeled by using various variograms models that are estimated by maximum likelihood method, restricted maximum likelihood method, ordinary least squares, and weighted least squares. The parameters of estimated variogram models are utilized in ordinary kriging, universal kriging, Bayesian kriging with constant trend, and varying trend and the above methods are used for interpolation of sulfate concentration. The K-fold cross validation is used to measure the performances of variogram models and interpolation methods. Bayesian kriging with a constant trend produces minimum root mean square prediction error than other interpolation methods. Concentration of sulfate in drinking water within the study area is increasing to the Northern part, and health risks are really high due to poor quality of water.


Bayesian kriging Groundwater Ordinary kriging Sulfate Universal kriging Variogram 



The authors are grateful to Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources Regional office, Lahore for providing data to meet the objectives of the study. The authors are also thankful to the Deanship of Scientific Research, King Saud University Riyadh for funding the work through the research Group project No RGP-VPP-210. Last but not least the authors are thankful to the reviewers and editor for their valuable comments.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human Participants and Informed Consent

The manuscript titled “Spatial Distribution of Sulfate Concentration in Groundwater of South-Punjab, Pakistan” submitted for possible publication in Water quality exposure and health is prepared in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation and with the latest (2008) version of Helsinki Declaration of 1975. The authors of manuscript certify that they have NO affiliations with or involvement in any organization or entity with any financial interest, or non-financial interest in the subject matter or materials discussed in this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of StatisticsQuaid-i-Azam UniversityIslamabadPakistan
  2. 2.Faculty of Health StudiesUniversity of BradfordBradfordUK
  3. 3.Department of StatisticsCOMSATS Institute of Information TechnologyLahorePakistan
  4. 4.Arriyadh Community CollegeKing Saud UniversityArriyadhSaudi Arabia
  5. 5.Bradford Institute for Health ResearchBradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation TrustBradfordUK

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