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The study provided an assessment of environmental harzard , the risk and possible solutions to reducing this disaster. The case study for this research was niger delta and it was discover oilspill and gas flare was common to thes people of the niger delta region. An assessment of the effect of gas flare and oilspill which lead to environmental degradation was also carried out. it also discovered that the government have a vital role to play in prevention and management of environmental risk.
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The Oxford Advanced Learners English Dictionary defined environment as conditions, circumstances, etc affecting peoples’ lives. It is the complex of physical, chemical and biotic factors that acts upon an organism or an ecological community and ultimately determines its survival (Encyclopedia Britannica Vol. 4).
Haggets (1975) defines environment as the sum total of all conditions that surrounds man at any point in time on the earth, surface viewing human environment from the economic point. Oditte (1993) describes it as natural, capital and analogous to financial capital assets. In this case, any damage done to the environment runs down capital, which sooner or later reduces the value of its recurrent services.
For residential housing environment for instance, is any damage or deviation from its ideal situation puts the health of its resident at stake. The residents as well can
be psychologically affected when any little damage (or disturbance from its ideal condition) is done to residential housing environment. This is why there is cry for
sustainable development. These are development that will take cognizance of the meeting of future needs.
Carter (1977) categorized environment into air
environment, water environment, noise environment, biological environment, another way in which environment is categorized broadly is that which groups it
into physical land, air and water environment and the none economic environment.
Various Activities That Take Place On The
The effect of major environmental hazard cannot be over emphasized. However the most worrisome of them all, as of now are the global environmental ones. The
problems created by them are threat to both aquatic and terrestrial life and can lead to their extinction. The major global environmental hazards range from pollution (air water and noise) to biological losses. Deforestation and atmospheric contamination. Each particular problem has had a linkage effect with another, which tends to exacerbate the effect with another thus creating wares of anxiety. Worry and concern for all lovers of the environment.
These various types of environmental hazards in Nigeria includes the following Pollution
This is one of the various types of environment hazard in Nigeria. This phenomenon occurs whenever potentially harmful substance are released into the environment pollution on the whole is causes principally by human activities, though it can also be a natural process. It is usually classed according to the receiving agents of air as emissions water as effluents and land as dumps and
disposal. (Ukpong: 1994).
Pollution can be categorized into three major types Viz: Air pollution, water pollution and noise pollution. Environmental or air pollution arises from people’s
economic and domestic activities like modern agriculture which requires pesticides that pollute the atmosphere or enter water system via run – off and sewage. Industrial activities are responsible for wide rang of pollution.
Thermal power stations, burning fossil fuel and moving vehicles emit harmful pollutions like sulphur dioxides, nitrogen oxide and carbon dioxide that cause acid – rain global warming and malfunctioning of hum/animal’s hemoglobin’s.
Mba (1996) identifies major sources of water pollution in Nigeria to include industrial plants, decomposed domestic wastes, solid minerals mining activities as well as petroleum mining operations. In his own view Odiete (1994) identified water pollution sources as arising from soil erosion the discharge of industrial and household effluent wastes (untreated) into the water bodies and the growth of water. Okorie (1992) identified the distribution of unchecked gully erosion as a source of water pollution, according to him, the gully erosion has destroyed
extensive farmlands and development projects.
In addition to the above discourse, another major environmental problem is flooding. According to UNDP (1995) Lagos. flooding arises from rivers and streams over flowing their banks. The occurrence is seasonal and is usually during and after the rainy season. In some areas it is an annual occurrence. Rainfall has been identified as a primary causative factory for flooding. In addition, clay soil are more prone to flooding and many of the eastern states available to
flooding (Cabdhali, 1995)
Furthermore another major environmental hazard is noise. Noise is most often defined as unwanted sound. Noise is usually measured in Decibels (db) and is
generated mostly in high density urban areas or even in the industrial areas that usually use industrial plants as their sources of energy.
This is also one of the various types of environment hazard in Nigeria. This is the continued build – up of green house gases in the atmosphere. These gases
which include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, chloro-fluorocarbons among others block some of the heat radiated from the earth to cause green house effect.
According to inter-governmental panel on climate change (IPCC), the last two decodes of the 20th century are the hottest on record (UN, 1998). Some of the major causes of increasing emissions of green houses gases are the burning of fossil fuels for energy and transport the clearing of forests, which reduces carbon dioxide absorption cattle raising which produces methane emission as a by-product and use of technology that pollutes. Accordingly this global warming led to the rise in sea water level leading to soil erosion, flooding and droughts.
Ozone Layer Depletion
This is also one of the various types of environmental hazards in Nigeria. The Ozone layer is basically found as a height of about 20 – 30km above sea level. This Ozone Layer provides a protective layer which prevents the penetration of sun harmful ultra violent rays. Joe (1995) in his findings proved that the Ozone Layer depletion was even greater than predicted.
The pollution of the atmosphere from the release of CFCS gases causes the depletion of the zone layer an this results in environmental degradation. According to Ukpong (1994) most of the skin disease and the low productivity in agriculture are caused by ultra-violent rays. Also increase in ultra – violet radiation affects water bodies, disturbs aquatic life which support the food chain, and causes the death of fishes that feed us. It also causes deterioration of synthetic materials
such as paints, and other products used in the building industry, Invariably causing deterioration of housing delivery to our ever increasing human population.
This is one of the worst environmental hazard in Nigeria. Over 40 million are affected in Nigeria. This has led to food shortages and health problems in Nigeria.
Ukpong as (1994) noted the causes of land degradation as follows;
i. Improper resources management
ii. ii. Destructive logging of our forests
iii. Overgrazing and over cropping of Arable lands
iv. iv.Flooding and wind erosion menace
v. Strip mining in Jos and Enugu areas
vi. Land degradation with pesticides and fertilizer
vii. Some known natural – land slides etc.
viii. Destruction of wet lands and marshes for development
He also identified other indirect causes of land degradation to include the population growth and population influx, property ownership issues, lack of
control, enforcement measures and jurisdictional overlap which are due to unclear authority and the use of inappropriate technology for farming and even for
producing manufactured goods.
Atmospheric contamination is the reduction in quality of the air environment. This is caused by natural and manmade activities. Some of the natural causes include
volcanic eruption, where winds, earthquakes etc. While the man-made causes are inappropriate solid waste disposal, gal flaring, oil exploration, industrial pollution,
coastal erosion etc. The above-mentioned causes are known to affect both aquatic and terrestrial lives and contribute to bio-diversity loss. (Adeleke. Et al 1978)
in order to protect human health and environment from these potential harzard arising from thee inappropriate waste disposal and its consequential environmental pollution, a systematic ally supervised and controlled management of these waste is a necessity through communication. Communication from the perspective of these study goes beyond the mere provision of information by technical means (telephone, prints and electronic media ). Communication as used in this study also includes a way of approaching and exploring processes in a society
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