Electrochemical Arsenic Remediation in Rural Bangladesh

EPA Grant Number: SU833553
Title: Electrochemical Arsenic Remediation in Rural Bangladesh
Investigators: Gadgil, Ashok , Amrose, Susan
Current Investigators: Gadgil, Ashok , Cheng, Deborah , Huang, Jessica , Kowolik, Kristin , Muller, Marc , Kostecki, Robert , Amrose, Susan , Srinivasan, Venkat
Institution: University of California - Berkeley
EPA Project Officer: Page, Angela
Phase: I
Project Period: September 30, 2007 through September 30, 2008
Project Amount: $9,971
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2007) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , P3 Challenge Area - Safe and Sustainable Water Resources , P3 Awards , Sustainable and Healthy Communities


Today 60 million Bangladeshi citizens are being slowly poisoned as they drink arsenic contaminated water from wells that contain up to 100 times the maximum limit set by WHO. This is a clear case of essential needs of the current generation going unmet, violating the first requirement of sustainability. Low cost methods of remediation currently available have been found to be ineffective for high concentrations of arsenic in the region. A novel use of electrocoagulation (EC) technology has the potential to overcome the obstacles of previous methods and can be used affordably and on a small-scale, allowing for rapid dissemination into Bangladesh to help put an end to this arsenic crisis.


We propose to build on our own promising initial results from a project at LBNL, ending in August 2007, that demonstrate the ability of EC to reduce the arsenic content in Bangladeshi drinking water to below health standard levels. We will produce an experimental assessment of the EC operating parameters required for effective remediation in the specific water environment of Bangladesh and optimize those parameters while bearing in mind the economic and technical requirements to function successfully in remote areas. The outcome of this work will be an increase in the health and standard of living of the Bangladeshi people, giving them a chance to prosper while avoiding the detrimental effects to the planet that would occur from other less effective, large-scale, high-cost, and high waste output remediation strategies.

This work will be carried out by a graduate student who will learn how to apply and direct basic research towards a sustainable goal in a developing country.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 2 publications for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

drinking water, groundwater, adsorption, chemicals, toxics, heavy metals, Bangladesh,

Relevant Websites:

Phase 2 Abstract

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report
  • P3 Phase II:

    Electrochemical Arsenic Remediation in Rural Bangladesh  | 2009 Progress Report  | Final Report