Analysis of Selected Heavy Metals in Surface Water and Sediments from Unreclaimed Mining Ponds Used for Irrigation Farming in Jos South, Nigeria
The present study is aimed at examining the heavy metal contamination in surface water and sediments
from selected unreclaimed mining ponds Bukuru and Rayfield towns, Jos south Local Government Area
“L.G.A” Plateau State. Five representative unreclaimed ponds were purposively selected in each
unreclaimed mine ponds of Bukuru and Rayfield. Water and sediment samples were collected from January
to September, 2019, with January to March representing dry season and April to September as rainy season.
A total of 22 water samples were collected for the study with 11 samples in each of the seasons. Samples
collected for each of the seasons were analyzed for Cd, Mn, Hg, Cu, Ni, Pb, Ur and Zn, while a control
point was selected in Riyom. In the exception of Cd, mean levels of sampled metals were within NESREA
permissible limits in water samples for most locations, while Mn, Hg Cu were very high and above
permissible limits. The result of a one-sample t-test showed that there is no significant difference between
the observed mean levels and NESREA standard either in water at p>0.05, d = 0.0993 or sediment at
p>0.05, d = 0.209. Mean levels of all heavy metals in both water and sediment samples were higher in the
dry season when compared to the rainy season samples, although the difference was not statistically
significant at p>0.05, d = 0.052 for water, while the difference was found in sediment at p>0.05, d = 0.015.
The study found that concentration levels in sediment were significantly higher than levels in water at
p>0.05, d = 0.006. In terms of spatial variation, concentration levels differ significantly in sediment samples
between Bukuru and Rayfield mine sites at p>0.05, d = 0.019, while water samples did not show a statistical
difference at p>0.05, d = 0.053 between the two locations. Since the water in unreclaimed mining ponds
are used for fish farming, irrigating and domestic purposes, it is of great concern that Cd is in high
concentration because it is extremely toxic and carcinogenic.
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