Why Is Barium In Our Water?

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/19/Barite.jpg

(“Barium”, n.d.)

Barium is a  silvery-white metal that usually gets into the water in the form of discharge from drilling waste or metal refineries (“Basic Information about Barium in Drinking Water”, 2013). It is also present in specific types of igneous or sedimentary rocks, and in some types of sand and gravel aquifers (“Barium in manitoba,” 2010). Materialistic items that are common and used on a daily basis could also contain barium ions: items such as paint, bricks, tiles, glass, rubber and certain fluorescent lighting (“Barium-Ba”, 2015).

Barium can either enter the water cycle in the form of discharge from industrial factories or naturally, as a result of erosion of the rocks it’s found in (“Basic Information about Barium in Drinking Water”, 2013).

Once in the water system, barium may either convert to insoluble salts that will precipitate or migrate into the ground water or soil (Patel, 2014). Certain types of barium compounds are more soluble and may end up being absorbed by animals or humans (Choudhury, 2001). 

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