Management of Nitrate m Groundwater: A Simulation Study

M. Ahmed, S. AI-Rawahy, J. Al-Handhaly, S.N. AI-Saadi, H. Al-Ajmi

Abstract


Agriculture may cause nitrate and other chemicals to enter into groundwater systems. Nitrate in drinking water is considered a health hazard. A study was conducted to assess the extent of nitrate pollution of groundwater caused by agriculture and to evaluate the possibility of using the LEACHN model to manage nitrate entry into groundwater of agricultural areas of Al-Batinah, which is the most important agricultural region of Oman. Groundwater samples were collected and analyzed to assess the problem and to detect possible trends. Soil sampling and analyses were done to demonstrate the difference in the nitrate concentration in agricultural and non-agricultural soils. A questionnaire survey was conducted to gather information on agricultural practices, fertilizer input, and other possible sources of nitrate pollution. Results from the study show that 23% of groundwater samples have a concentration of nitrate-N concentration of 10 mg/l and 34% samples exceed 8 mg/l. Agricultural soils have higher levels of nitrate compared to non- agricultural soils. Results also demonstrate that nitrate levels in groundwater in Al-Batinah are rising. Application of the ‘LEACHN’ model demonstrated its suitability for use as a management tool to reduce nitrate leaching to groundwater by controlling fertilizer and water input.

 

 


Keywords


Groundwater, management, nitrate, simulation, agriculture.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24200/jams.vol6iss0pp59-65

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Copyright (c) 2017 M. Ahmed, S. AI-Rawahy, J. Al-Handhaly, S.N. AI-Saadi, H. Al-Ajmi

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

JAMS 2017-CC BY-ND

This journal and its content is licensed under a Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International.

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