Evaluation of physico-chemical quality and metallic contamination level of epikarstic seepage waters in forest zone

Document Type : Research Article


Department of chemistry, Faculty of exact sciences, University Djillali Liabes of Sidi Bel Abbes, Algeria


The present study is based on a quantification by Atomic Absorption Spectrometry (AAS), of metallic trace elements (MTE) in karstic water collected in a subhumid cavity following the wet deposition corresponding to the leaching of the atmosphere by rainwater. Our choice focused on a forest site located in mid-mountain, at the level of the forest of Hafir, located 15 Km in the south west of the city of Tlemcen (Algeria) and near a road traffic. In the light of the analytical results obtained, the presence in high concentrations of certain heavy metals such as cadmium Cd and nickel Ni in the rainwater, lead Pb and cadmium Cd in snow is reported in high concentrations. These waters loaded by these MTE, were able to infiltrate in the walls of the cavity and contaminate the water of the karst. All-in the rainwater and snow were collected on the exterior surface of the cavity. However, after rainfall and runoff, the infiltration water loads in Pb (0.15 mg/l), and Ni (0.044 mg/l).
For the other MTE: Mn, Co, Cu, Cd, Cr, Ag and Fe, they were detected in karstic water, but at levels below WHO recommended standards. These contents may reflect the release of these elements from the sediments of the cavity, remitted in suspension during the precipitation occurring in this period.