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Word Count: 762
Located in Southern Asia bordering the Bay of Bengal between Burma and India lies my place of origin Bangladesh Increasing at 209 2005 est the population is around 144319628 of this country which is slightly smaller than Iowa Clearly not only does it have a history as being one of the most densely populated countries in the world and with its poverty rate increasing proportionally the unfortunate inhabitants are facing a crisis in lack of safe drinking water Many people use the term clean to refer to the type of drinking water which Bangladesh lacks but I think the term safe is more appropriate The reason for this is due to the fact there are high arsenic levels found in water This I find to be the most pressing environmental issue Arsenic is present in many foods that we eat and in trance amounts this is actually essential to good human health However in high concentrations arsenic can be extremely toxic Two common forms of arsenic is AsIII and AsV where the latter is reduced to AsIII in the human body AsIII becomes more toxic as it builds up and by continuous conversion of AsV In many countries such as Bangladesh water pollution especially of fishing areas results from the use of commercial pesticides such as Pb3AsO42 and Ca3AsO42 thereby containing AsV Health problems are specifically common when there are more natural than anthropogenic sources of arsenic For example groundwater contaminated by naturally occurring arsenic is the main source of drinking water for many Bengalis approximately 40 million As a matter of importance the arsenic concentrations are greater in the Bengal Delta This form of water is difficult to detect because arsenic is tasteless odorless and invisible Its no surprise then the World Health Organization WHO has named this area as the largest mass poisoning of a population in history Although some people can be treated immediately who are found to have arsenic-related diseases many
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