Assessment of Groundwater Pollution Potential of the Datong Basin, Northern China

Mamadou SAMAKE, Zhonghua Tang, Win Hlaing, Innocent M’Bue, Kanyamanda Kasereka


Groundwater is water present below the surface of the earth in underground streams and aquifers. It is the main source of water supply in arid and semi-arid regions of northwestern China. Studies, in recent years have reported increased cases of aquifer contamination due to different factors such as rapid urbanization and industrialization. Using DRASTIC model, this study attempts to measure vulnerability of ground water to contamination in the Datong Basin, located in Northern China. To reduce subjectivity, a sensitivity analysis was performed to evaluate the influence of a single parameter on aquifer vulnerability.

The results show that 32.5% of the total study area is under a “highly vulnerable zone”. In addition the most sensitive parameter to contamination is aquifer media (A), followed in importance by hydraulic conductivity (C), topography (T), depth to water (D), soil media (S), and impact of vadose zone (I). Net recharge (R) is the least sensitive parameter to pollution. Aquifer vulnerability maps developed in this study are valuable tools for environmental planning and predictive groundwater management.

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Journal of Sustainable Development   ISSN 1913-9063 (Print)   ISSN 1913-9071 (Online) Email:

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