Subsurface Pollution in Asian Megacities

  • Shin-ichi Onodera


To confirm the various subsurface pollutants associated with urbanization, many previous studies were reviewed. Nitrate, trace metal, and chloride subsurface pollutants have considerably increased with urbanization. Megacities, in particular, are highly vulnerable to pollution. Some of the Asian megacities were classified as follows: Jakarta and Manila are in the developing stage (1st stage) with serious surface pollution problems from nitrate and trace metals: Bangkok is in the developed stage (2nd stage) with subsurface pollution from various contaminants: and Seoul and Taipei are in the developed stage with infrastructure for sewage treatment (3rd stage), as are Tokyo and Osaka. The third stage cities may experience potential delayed contaminant discharge through groundwater to rivers and to the sea in the surrounding area. The vulnerability of each city to pollution was determined by the intensities of surface and subsurface pollution. These intensities are controlled by human impact as well as the natural environment. For example, the emission and load of pollutants increased with the population and surface pollution occurred in the city’s first stage of development. In the next stage, subsurface pollution occurred with the transport of surface pollutants to groundwater. In addition, groundwater abstraction affected the intrusion of surface pollution to deep groundwater. On the other hand, contamination and attenuation processes related to groundwater flow conditions were controlled by the natural environmental factors, such as the ­topography, geology, watershed area, and natural recharge or climate.


Chemical Oxygen Demand Biochemical Oxygen Demand Land Subsidence Shallow Groundwater Groundwater Discharge 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



I thank the staffs and students of the RIHN project and students of RM project in Hiroshima University. Especially, I would like to give the special thanks to the main material group members, Dr. T. Hosono, Dr. Y. Umezawa, Prof. T. Nakano, Prof. S. Nakaya, Dr. M. Saito, and Mr. Y. Shimizu, and Project leader, Prof. M. Taniguchi, and foreign counterpart members.


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Copyright information

© Springer 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Integrated Arts and SciencesHiroshima UniversityHiroshimaJapan

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