What is it about?

Water quality indices (WQIs) are necessary for resolving lengthy, multi-parameter, water analysis reports into single digit scores; different WQIs have been developed worldwide which are greatly differing in terms of mathematical structures, the numbers and types of variables included, etc. The aim of this paper is to evaluate trends of water quality in Tafna basin with a comparison of 10 WQIs perceived as the most important indices for water quality assessment. The results show that there is an appreciable difference between indices values for the same water sample. The results also show that water quality categorization for sampling stations in the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment WQI (CCMEWQI) and British Columbia WQI (BCWQI) was found to be ‘marginal’ for all sampling stations, except Hammam Boughrara reservoir and Mouillah wadi where it was found to be ‘poor’. For the Aquatic Toxicity Index, it was found to be ‘totally unsuitable for normal fish life’ for all stations and ‘suitable only for hardy fish species' for Mouillah wadi and Boughrara reservoir. The results show that this transboundary catchment always needs strategies for more effective pollution control management. Future use of WQIs in this way should prove a valuable tool for environmental planning decision-makers in tracking water quality change.

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Why is it important?

Water quality indices (WQIs) are necessary for resolving lengthy, multi-parameter, water analysis reports into single digit scores; different WQIs have been developed worldwide which are greatly differing in terms of mathematical structures, the numbers and types of variables included, etc. The aim of this paper is to evaluate trends of water quality in Tafna basin with a comparison of 10 WQIs perceived as the most important indices for water quality assessment. The results show that there is an appreciable difference between indices values for the same water sample. The results also show that water quality categorization for sampling stations in the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment WQI (CCMEWQI) and British Columbia WQI (BCWQI) was found to be ‘marginal’ for all sampling stations, except Hammam Boughrara reservoir and Mouillah wadi where it was found to be ‘poor’. For the Aquatic Toxicity Index, it was found to be ‘totally unsuitable for normal fish life’ for all stations and ‘suitable only for hardy fish species' for Mouillah wadi and Boughrara reservoir. The results show that this transboundary catchment always needs strategies for more effective pollution control management. Future use of WQIs in this way should prove a valuable tool for environmental planning decision-makers in tracking water quality change.

Perspectives

The results show that the Tafna basin (a transboundary catchment) always needs strategies for more effective pollution control management. Future use of WQIs in this way should prove a valuable tool for environmental planning decision-makers in tracking water quality change.

Dr Abdelkader Hamlat
University of Laghouat

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This page is a summary of: Status and trends of water quality in the Tafna catchment: a comparative study using water quality indices, Journal of Water Reuse and Desalination, March 2016, IWA Publishing, DOI: 10.2166/wrd.2016.155.
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