Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Acid water in East Java threatens biodiversity and local welfare

16.09.2005


She went to investigate the local ecology. Yet during her field work on East Java, Dutch biologist Ansje Löhr became increasingly involved with the local residents, whose harvests failed and whose health was deteriorating due to extremely acidified and polluted river water. Löhr has recently received a second grant to help the Javanese population.



Löhr’s Ph.D. study was part of a larger project on the Ijen Crater Lake on East Java, Indonesia. This crater lake is the largest collection of volcanic water in the world and is extremely acidic (pH 0.1). The acidic water slowly seeps away, and despite dilution by two tributaries in the area the pH of the river water remains very low. This water is used for agricultural and household purposes, which sometimes leads to the rice harvests failing. The very high aluminium content of the water – associated with the acidity – also plays an important role in this. Other elements such as fluorine, in the form of fluoride, form a direct threat for public health. The levels are not only alarmingly high in the river water but also in the groundwater and drinking water wells.

Biodiversity


Within the large project scientists studied the geochemical and hydrological processes as well as the health risks. Ansje Löhr investigated the ecological effects of the acidic water. As well as having a harmful effect on the well-being of the local population, it adversely affects the biodiversity.

Löhr sampled the water at various locations. She observed that the neutral river water contained normal aquatic fauna, but that only mosquito larvae could survive the extremely acidic water. The diversity of microorganisms and algae was also very low. The inhibited breakdown of organic material was another ecological effect measured. Löhr established this using packs containing jati and bamboo leaves, which she suspended in the river at various locations. She determined the loss dry matter over a period of several months.

Solution

According to Löhr, one possible solution for the acidification problem is simply to prevent the crater water from mixing with both neutral rivers. She believes that this could be realised by channelling the flow of acidic water from the crater into the sea, which with its enormous water surface would not suffer any detrimental effects due to this small quantity of acidic water. Löhr wants to hold discussions with local authorities, other researchers and companies in order to arrange such a diversion or another solution. The biologist recently received a dissemination grant from NWO-WOTRO to support this.

Ansje Löhr’s research was funded by NWO-WOTRO.

Ansje Löhr | alfa
Further information:
http://www.nwo.nl/nwohome.nsf/pages/NWOP_6FRH2J_Eng

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Preservation of floodplains is flood protection
27.09.2017 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Conservationists are sounding the alarm: parrots much more threatened than assumed
15.09.2017 | Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Ocean atmosphere rife with microbes

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

Neutrons observe vitamin B6-dependent enzyme activity useful for drug development

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

NASA finds newly formed tropical storm lan over open waters

17.10.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>