Contamination Source Assessment of Groundwater Nitrate in a Complex Terrain

복잡한 지형에서 발생하는 지하수의 질산태 질소 오염원 평가

  • 한광현 (충북대학교 응용생명환경학부)
  • Received : 2009.01.02
  • Accepted : 2009.01.25
  • Published : 2009.02.28


Classification of land uses and analysis of nitrogen isotope fractionation in groundwater nitrate were carried out to examine its contamination sources in Jeju province. ${\delta}^{15}N$ values of urea (hydrolyzed with urease), ammonium sulfate, compost, water from septic tank were -1.7, -5.8, +14.1, and +24.0‰, respectively. Urea, when it was directly distillated, showed -16.5‰. Based on these ${\delta}^{15}N$ values, sources of nitrate could be classified as originated from chemical fertilizers with ${\delta}^{15}N$ values below +5‰ and as from animal manure or municipal waste with ${\delta}^{15}N$ values over +10‰. Results of ${\delta}^{15}N$ analysis of 33 wells showed that most wells had the chemical fertilizers as their dominant contamination source. However, some wells were contaminated by other sources: animal wastes or municipal wastes. Some wells were also contaminated by the combined sources of nitrate. It was also demonstrated that ${\delta}^{15}N$ analysis could be a useful tool even in the case where no apparent contamination source is found.


Nitrogen isotope;Chemical fertilizer;Animal manure;Land use;Kinetic isotope effect


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