Multivariate statistical analysis applied to the evaluation of groundwater quality in the central-southern portion of the state of Bahia - Brazil

Maria da Conceição Rabelo Gomes, José Ângelo Sebastião Araújo dos Anjos, Rafael Ribeiro Daltro



The objective of this study was to identify and evaluate the variables responsible for contributing to possible natural and/or human contamination in groundwater of the semiarid region of the state of Bahia, seeking to subsidize water quality monitoring and management actions in the area. To do so, multivariate analysis techniques regarding factorial analysis in principal components and cluster analysis were used. The factorial analysis allowed the grouping of variables into two principal factors that explained 93% of total accumulated variance. Variables were strongly related to concentrations of metals and salinity in the water. The cluster analysis was used to classify water sources according to the quality of waters into three clusters in each factor. The natural background of the rocks of the municipality of Boquira was shown to influence water resources. A continuous (during dry and rainy seasons) monitoring of water quality from wells and springs located upstream and downstream from contamination sources is recommended, even if these waters are not used for public supply, to determine possible contamination plumes from contaminated material.


cluster analysis, factorial analysis, heavy metals, semiarid


Revista Ambiente & Água. ISSN:1980-993X DOI:10.4136/1980-993X

Editoração:Apoio:Filiada à ABEC: