Oxygen (δ18O) and hydrogen (δ2H and 3H) isotopes of water, along with their hydrochemistry, were used to identify the source of a newly emerged seepage water in the downstream of Lake Nainital, located in the Lesser Himalayan region of Uttarakhand, India. A total of 57 samples of water from 19 different sites, in and around the seepage site, were collected. Samples were analysed for chemical tracers like Ca++, Mg++, Na+, K+, SO4−− and Cl− using an Ion Chromatograph (Dionex IC-5000). A Dual Inlet Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer (DIIRMS) and an Ultra-Low Level Liquid Scintillation Counter (ULLSC), were used in measurements of stable isotopes (δ2H and δ18O) and a radioisotope (3H), respectively. Results obtained in this study repudiate the possibility of any likely connection between seepage water and the lake water, and indicate that the source of seepage water is mainly due to locally recharged groundwater. The study suggests that environmental isotopes (δ2H, δ18O and 3H) can effectively be used as ‘tracers’ in the detection of the source of seepage water in conjunction with other hydrochemical tracers, and can help in water resource management and planning.
Volume 128 | Issue 8
Click here for Editorial Note on CAP Mode