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The quality assessment of borehole and well waters from ten locations in Enugu urban area were studied and compared with World Health Organisation standards. The parameters measured include temperature, color, pH, electrical conductivity, total hardness, calcium hardness, magnesium hardness, total solids, total dissolved solids, total suspended solids, alkalinity, chloride, sulphate, phosphate, nitrate, copper, cadmium, zinc, lead, iron, and total coliform. Langelier Saturation and Ryznar Stability Indices were also calculated for some of these parameters. The results obtained at daily intervals were plotted and they showed pollution of seven of the boreholes. Concentrations of Cadmium were high above the limit in six of the boreholes while concentrations of lead and phosphates were high in only two of the boreholes, with respect to the WHO permissible limits for potable water. All the waters show presence of coliform and corrosion potentials. Consequently, these ground waters in this study require treatment before they will be good for human consumption.
The use of water by man is as old as the existence of human beings since water, which is a natural resource, is indispensable to life.
Water is a common chemical substance that is essential for the survival of all known forms of life. It is used in vast quantities for drinking purposes, and even in greater quantities for washing, bleaching, dyeing, cooling, raising steam to drive engines or turbines to generate electricity and in other industrial processes far too numerous to mention [1,2].
As a result of industrialisation and urbanisation, people migrate to townships and the population in these cities become too high; so is the need for water. Although surface water such as lakes, rivers, streams and springs are easily accessible, there is a great quest for people to drill borehole ground waters which are thought to be of better quality. It is pertinent to observe that there are
several human activities, which have indirect and devastating effects on ground water quality. Such activities include accidental or unauthorized release of chemical substances, discharge of untreated effluents, leaching of noxious liquids from solid waste deposits, surface runoff, untreated sewage, from population around the area [4,5]. This is because these pollutants or contaminants are carried by water and water moves easily through the soil and underlying rocks. This occurs particularly where the soil is sandy, gravelley or shallow or over porous limestone bedrock .
It is therefore the concern of scientists to ensure that the supply of water is maintained at sufficient purity for the masses to use. All the water from the borehole to the consumption level ought to meet the standards laid down by World Health Organization for drinking water to make the water potable. Substandard water samples can lead to diseases such as typhoid fever, dysentery, cholera and other types of gastrointestinal disturbances.For
drinking water to be safe, the concentration of undesirable substances should not exceed the levels established by World Health Organization as shown in Table 1below
Table 1: WHO Permissible Values
5 – 25 units
Taste and odor
6.0 – 8.5
Electrical conductivity (µmhoscm–1)
Alkalinity (mg–1) CaCO3
Total solids (mg-1)
Total dissolved solids (mgl–1)
Total suspended solid (mgl–1)
Total hardness (mgl–1) CaCO3
Calcium hardness (mg-1) CaCO3
Magnesium (mg-1) CaCO3
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