Arsenic in groundwater and its influence on exposure risks through traditionally cooked rice in Prey Vêng Province, Cambodia

A. O'Neill, D.H. Phillips, S. Kok, E. Chea, B. Seng, B. Sen Gupta

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    16 Citations (Scopus)


    Arsenic (As) contamination of communal tubewells in Prey Vêng, Cambodia, has been observed since 2000. Many of these wells exceed the WHO As in drinking water standard of 10 µg/L by a factor of 100. The aim of this study was to assess how cooking water source impacts dietary As intake in a rural community in Prey Vêng. This aim was fulfilled by (1) using geostatistical analysis techniques to examine the extent of As contaminated groundwater in Prey Vêng and identify a suitable study site, (2) conducting an on-site study in two villages to measure As content in cooked rice prepared with water collected from tubewells and locally harvested rainwater, and (3) determining the dietary intake of As from consuming this rice. Geostatistical analysis indicated that high risk tubewells (>50 µg As/L) are concentrated along the Mekong River's east bank. Participants using high risk tubewells are consuming up to 24 times more inorganic As daily than recommended by the previous FAO/WHO provisional tolerable daily intake value (2.1 µg/kgBW/day). However, As content in rice cooked in rainwater was significantly reduced, therefore, it is considered to be a safer and more sustainable option for this region.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1072-1079
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
    Early online date08 Apr 2013
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2013


    • Arsenic
    • Groundwater
    • Traditionally cooked rice
    • Dietary intake
    • Rainwater harvesting
    • Cambodia

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
    • Pollution
    • Waste Management and Disposal
    • Environmental Chemistry
    • Environmental Engineering

    Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Arsenic in groundwater and its influence on exposure risks through traditionally cooked rice in Prey Vêng Province, Cambodia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Impacts

    Treatment Systems for Safer Drinking Water

    Debra Phillips (Participant)

    Impact: Health Impact, Environmental Impact, Quality of Life Impact, Economic Impact


  • Cite this