Groundwater quality impairment due to mismanagement of biodegradable waste
1Energy and Wetlands Research Group, Centre for Ecological Sciences [CES],
2Centre for Sustainable Technologies, 3Centre for infrastructure, Sustainable Transportation and Urban Planning (CiSTUP),
Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore – 560012, India.
*Corresponding author:


Unplanned rapid urbanization during the post globalization period has led to the spread of many urban pockets without appropriate infrastructure such as sanitation, waste management facilities, etc. Most of the wastewater generated is discharged to storm water drains with partial or no treatment and this water ultimately gets discharged to water bodies due to interconnected network of lakes in Bangalore. The city generates 3000-4000 tonnes of solid waste and the government has identified waste disposal or landfill sites at outskirts. However due to lack of appropriate regulatory mechanism the waste collected from respective wards are being dumped in drains, lake beds or open area. Indiscriminate and continuous disposal of solid and liquid waste has affected the natural resources – land and water. The current study focuses on the assessment of impacts of waste mismanagement in the city. Groundwater quality assessment has been done in the buffer zones of water bodies as well as illegal solid waste dumps. Overlay of environmental parameters along with water sources reveal higher levels of nitrates due to the sustained inflow of wastewater to the water bodies and also due to transport of leachate (with nutrients) from dump sites. The groundwater wells closer to sewage fed water bodies or illegal waste dump have higher levels of nitrates pointing to the contamination of water due to mismanagement of waste in the city. Flooding in the city at some pockets is due to dumping of solid waste and resultant clogging of drains.

Key words– Solid waste, liquid waste, unscientific disposal of solid waste, water bodies, Groundwater

Citation : Ramachandra, T.V.; Shwetmala, "Groundwater quality impairment due to mismanagement of biodegradable waste," Global Humanitarian Technology Conference: South Asia Satellite (GHTC-SAS), 2013 IEEE , vol., no., pp.223,227, 23-24 Aug. 2013. doi: 10.1109/GHTC-SAS.2013.6629920.
* Corresponding Author :
Dr. T.V. Ramachandra
Energy & Wetlands Research Group, Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore – 560 012, India.
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