Acta Scientific Agriculture (ASAG)(ISSN: 2581-365X)

Review Article Volume 4 Issue 6

Status, Challenges and Future Prospects of Wastewater Reuse for Agricultural Irrigation in Developing Countries: A Mini Review

Sandeep Singh Shekhawat1, Kavita Verma2 and AB Gupta1*

1Department of Civil Engineering, MNIT Jaipur, India
2JNTUH, Hyderabad, India

*Corresponding Author: AB Gupta, Department of Civil Engineering, MNIT Jaipur, India.

Received: April 02, 2020; Published: May 26, 2020



  Wastewater is becoming an important alternative resource to reduce water foot prints in many sectors. Agricultural irrigation sector accounts for the maximum (approximately 70%) use of fresh water worldwide. With increasing scarcity of fresh water resources, many developing countries have been using untreated or partially treated wastewaters for irrigation. Aim of this review is to present the status of wastewater generation, treatment and reuse in irrigation across major developing nations. These countries were selected on the basis of high population, low national water stress ranking (NWSR) and data availability (Table 1 and 2). Further, current challenges of presence of pathogens, antibiotics and antibiotic resistant bacteria in high concentrations in wastewaters reused for irrigation have been critically discussed. The wastewater generation data across these nations show a large range of 0.0805 - 58.92 km3/year, out of which barely 0.022 - 17.89 km3/year receives treatment. The vegetables (mostly lettuce) irrigated with wastewaters have reported high contamination of pathogens such as Enterococci, Salmonella, Vibrio, Clostridium, Klebsiella, helminth eggs. Similar results have been obtained for ARBs. Antibiotics concentrations reported in wastewater used for irrigation were up to 368 mg/L and up to many μg/Kg of antibiotics in plant tissues have been found to accumulate in edible crops raised with such waters. Antibiotics SMX and CIP were most widely present in wastewaters due to their excessive use in these countries as well as their persistence. Existing treatment technologies have not been found to be suitable to remove all these emerging pollutants from wastewaters. Moreover, lack of data on such pollutants from developing nations is the major challenge to tackle the problems associated with safe wastewater reuse and calls for appropriate policy reforms and development of upgraded technology to combat such issues. Therefore, it is suggested that regular detailed research inputs are required to ensure long term sustainability for a safe reuse of this misplaced resource to conserve human and environmental health.

Keywords: Agricultural Irrigation; Developing Countries; Antibiotics; Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria; Wastewater Reuse; Wastewater Treatment Plants



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Citation: AB Gupta., et al. “Status, Challenges and Future Prospects of Wastewater Reuse for Agricultural Irrigation in Developing Countries: A Mini Review". Acta Scientific Agriculture 4.6 (2020): 21-30.


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