Environmental Chemistry, Fate and Speciation of Arsenic in Groundwater-Soil-Crop Systems

  • Indranil Das
  • S. K. Sanyal
  • K. Ghosh


Arsenic (As) is a toxic metalloid having a natural origin in the earth’s crust. Among the several sources of As pollution, geogenic As pollution through contamination of the groundwater in the deltaic basin of Bengal (region of Ganga and Padma river) covering India and Bangladesh is of great concern to the world as it paved its way for As to adversely affect the soil-plant-animal continuum. Arsenic in soil and water is transformed chemically and biochemically through different processes, namely, oxidation, reduction, methylation, and demethylation. Regarding the fate, As mobility depends upon the clay percent and mineralogical makeup of the soil, whereas As retention is facilitated by different soil physicochemical properties, adsorption and ion exchange process, organic fraction-As complexation equilibria, surface charge characteristics, and other nutrient element interactions in soils. Precipitation-coprecipitation and microbial transformation also govern the fate of As in soil and water. After interaction with soil and water, As is further translocated or metabolized to plant body in several inorganic and organic forms. In plant body, As accumulation pattern, in general, was observed to follow the order root > stem >leaf > economic produce. Several workers attempted to derive the toxicity symptoms and values in the plant as well as man’s edibility. Finally, speciation of total loading of As for the affected soils and the crops into arsenite and arsenate oxyanion species is important for characterizing the net toxicity of As in the given soil-crop systems.


Arsenic Transformations Mobility Retention Fates Speciation 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Indranil Das
    • 1
  • S. K. Sanyal
    • 2
  • K. Ghosh
    • 3
  1. 1.Fertiliser Control LaboratoryAbas, Paschim MidnaporeIndia
  2. 2.Bidhan Chandra Krishi ViswavidyalayaNadiaIndia
  3. 3.Directorate of Agriculture (Administration)PuruliaIndia

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