The water supply of Rome: an “almost” unique case

Pasquale Avino, Geraldo Capannesi, Alberto Rosada, Matteo Vitali, Carmela Protano, Ivan Notardonato

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1 Citation (Scopus)


The trace element composition of water intended for human consumption plays an important role for public health. Water is a significant source of potentially toxic and essential elements; it can provide the body by both direct recruitment and/or influencing the element concentration in agriculture, livestock products and food industry. The present study examines the concentrations of a great number of elements in the drinking waters distributed in the territory of Rome, whose water supply mainly comes from spring waters. 20 samples drawn from municipal potable facilities in Rome were analyzed by Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis. The neutron irradiations were performed in the pneumatic channel and in the rotating rack of ENEA’s Triga Mark II reactor at 1.3 × 1013and 2.6 × 1012n cm−2 s−1, respectively. In total, 38 elements were determined in each sample. The results evidence that all the studied elements for all the aqueducts resulted well below the limits posed by the regulations on water for human consumption. Besides, considering the elements not regulated, the monitored waters resulted safe from a toxicological point of view, and adequate from nutritional aims. In addition, it was also evidenced that the elemental composition resulted quite similar to that of uncontaminated natural water. Finally, a statistical approach evidences that the elemental behavior of the monitored waters is mainly determined by geochemical factors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67 - 81
Number of pages15
JournalATTI Della Accademia Nazionale Dei Lincei Rendiconti Lincei Scienze Fisiche E Naturali
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2016
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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