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Impact of Mining and Farming activities on Water and Sediment Quality of the Mara river basin, Tanzania

Author Affiliations

  • 1School of Environmental Science and Technology, Ardhi University, P. O. Box 35176, Dar es Salaam, TANZANIA
  • 2Department of Food Science and Techonology, Sokoine University of Agriculture, P. O. Box 3006, Morogoro, TANZANIA

Res.J.chem.sci., Volume 3, Issue (7), Pages 15-24, July,18 (2013)

Abstract

The effects of mining and agriculture activities on the accumulation of heavy metals and nutrients in water and sediments of rivers in the Mara river basin were examined. The study aimed at evaluation of the environmental quality of aquatic system in order to ascertain its suitability for human consumption, recreation and other purpose. Heavy metals Cd, Pb, Cu, Zn and Cr concentrations ranged from 0.01 to 0.72 mg/l and 0.01 to 90.58 mg/kg dw were detected in surface water and sediments samples, respectively. Plant nutrients NO3- and PO43- concentrations ranged from 0.63 to 127.60 mg/l were detected in surface water samples. In most sites, heavy metals and nutrients concentrations detected were above the recommended WHO and national limits for drinking water. Mining wastes were considered to be major sources of heavy metals, while nutrients were considered to originate from agricultural runoff and weathered agricultural soils. All the parameters were measured by standard methods.

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