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Influence of mining and agricultural activities on the quality of groundwater from some rural areas of South-eastern Nigeria

Paper Topic: 
Water Quality

Pages :
406 - 417

Corresponing Author: 
Itumoh E. J.
Itumoh E. J. Aghamelu O. P. Izuagie T.
Paper ID: 
Paper Status: 
Date Paper Accepted: 
Paper online: 

This study examined the trends in anthropogenic chemical contaminants in groundwater samples in rural areas of Ebonyi State, South-eastern Nigeria. Groundwater samples were collected from Ezza North (a quarry mining area) and Ezza South (an agricultural/commercial area) and were analysed using standard techniques. The target compounds evaluated were As(V), phosphate, nitrate, sulfate, chloride and other physicochemical parameters. Pearson’s correlation and factor analyses were used to distinguish the statistical relationship between the various analytes and possible contamination sources in the study areas respectively. The results obtained showed that the pH, temperature, total hardness, electrical conductivity, phosphate, nitrate, chloride and sulfate were within the permissible limits of Water Quality Standards (WQS). Also, 67% of the samples had turbidity and alkalinity values above the WQS, while 25% contained As(V) slightly above the WQS. The qualities of the groundwater samples were found to be influenced mainly by the geochemistry of the soil while commercial and agricultural activities were found to have slight effect on the water quality.  This study finally advocates adequate monitoring of As(V), and other potential toxic contaminants in groundwater in the areas.


Keywords: groundwater, arsenic, chemical contaminants, mining area, factor analysis