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01-09-2020 | Original Article | Issue 18/2020

Environmental Earth Sciences 18/2020

Hydrobiogeochemical evolution along the regional groundwater flow systems in volcanic aquifers in Kumamoto, Japan

Journal:
Environmental Earth Sciences > Issue 18/2020
Authors:
Takahiro Hosono, Shahadat Hossain, Jun Shimada
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The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s12665-020-09155-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Abstract

Kumamoto is known as the largest groundwater city in Japan. Geochemical modeling (saturation indices and mineral stability diagram) was applied in this area for better understanding a hydrogeochemical evolution in volcanic aquifers in regional scale with additional constraint from stable isotopic dataset. Geochemical evolutionary model was interpreted along the water flow dynamics. In total 136 water samples were collected from wells, springs, and rivers in and around the major groundwater flow lines for geochemical analyses. Our results indicated that plagioclase is the major weathering reactant in aquifers with secondary important weathering minerals of pyroxenes. These reactions facilitate current hydrochemical signatures and produce secondary minerals of kaolinite or halloysite and smectite in later stage. Observed hydrogeochemical processes can be distinguished into two distinct criteria along flow regime. The first processes are material loads from the surface (mixing of contaminants and river waters) and initial stage of silicate weathering, resulting in the formation of Ca-HCO3, Ca-NO3–HCO3, and Ca–Mg–Na-HCO3 type waters. These processes prevail in aquifers at the recharge to lateral flow zones with relatively shorter residence time of < ca. 40 years. The second processes are the precipitation of clay minerals, i.e., smectite, and cation exchange reaction of Ca2+ and Mg2+ to Na+ in downslope aquifers (Na-HCO3 type) with relatively longer groundwater residence time of > 55 years. Microbiological reduction reactions dominate over these areas and salinization occurs at the coast that changes aquifer waters to be Na-Cl type. Proposed models and approach shown in this study may be useful and applicable in interpreting systems in other volcanic aquifer systems at similar climate conditions and for sustainable water resources management.

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