Journal of Environmental Hydrology
ISSN 1058-3912

Electronic Journal of the International Association for Environmental Hydrology

JEH Volume 15 (2007), Paper 13    Posted May 29, 2007

Duke U. Ophori1
Matthew Gorring1
Kevin Olsen2
Ese Orhua3
Jeffrey Hope1

1Dept. of Earth & Environmental Studies, Montclair State University, Upper Montclair, NJ, USA
2Dept. of Chemistry, Montclair State University, Upper Montclair, NJ, USA
3Dept. of Geology, Delta State University, Abraka, Delta State, Nigeria

Groundwater samples collected from 25 shallow boreholes in Ughelli, western Niger Delta, Nigeria, have been analyzed to determine major ion chemistry, and to compare the chemistry with that of the eastern Niger Delta. Preliminary results showed that major ions such as Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+ and Cl- occurred in relatively significant quantities in all the samples. The concentrations of these ions are below the standards for drinking water as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO). As with the landward side of the eastern Niger Delta, the concentration of Ca2+ was found to be higher than Mg2+ in all the samples. Chloride occurs in concentrations less than 14 ppm in 50 percent of the samples. Chloride concentration is higher in the remaining 50 percent of the samples, becoming greater than 40 ppm, which may indicate minor saltwater encroachment. However, only 20 percent of the samples have Na/Cl ratios that are below the values for seawater and freshwater. The results suggest that shallow groundwater in Ughelli is far enough inland to be beyond the influence of seawater from the Atlantic Ocean. As with the eastern Niger Delta, 60 percent of the samples analyzed had iron concentrations higher than the acceptable WHO standard of 0.3 ppm. As the source of the iron in the Niger Delta is not completely understood, further research is recommended in this area.

Reference: Ophori, D.U., M. Gorring, K. Olsen, E. Orhua, and J. Hope. 2007. A preliminary analysis of groundwater chemistry in shallow boreholes, Ughelli, Nigeria. Journal of Environmental Hydrology, Vol. 15, Paper 13.
Duke U. Ophori
Dept. of Earth & Environmental Studies
Montclair State University
Upper Montclair, NJ 07043

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