ARSENIC IN DRINKING WATER (Syllabus: GS Paper 2 – Health)

News-CRUX-10     20th January 2024        

Context: Sea-level rise driven by climate change could significantly release arsenic a cancer-causing agent into Bangladesh’s drinking well water, according to a new study.


  • About: Arsenic, a tasteless and odorless metalloid, occurs naturally in the earth's crust and groundwater.
  • Toxicity: In its inorganic form, arsenic is highly toxic, leading to arsenic poisoning with severe health consequences.
  • Arsenic-affected areas: Assam, Bihar, West Bengal, Punjab, and Uttar Pradesh (UP).
  • Health Implications: Arsenicosis, characterized by the accumulation of high arsenic levels, results in adverse health effects, potentially causing multi-system organ failure and death.
  • Global Initiatives: Efforts under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development focus on ensuring safely managed drinking water, free from arsenic contamination.
  • National Mission: The Jal Jeevan Mission, targeting 2024, aims to provide safe drinking water to all households in rural and urban India, addressing the arsenic threat.
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