Physiochemical Characteristics and Environmental Impact of Effluent Wastes from PROMOTEX Industries, Nnewi.

Physiochemical Characteristics and Environmental Impact of Effluent Wastes from PROMOTEX Industries, Nnewi.

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For a total period of four months, effluent, water and soil samples were collected on a monthly basis from an industrial area in Nnewi in Anambra State in order to determine their constituents. A total of twenty six parameters were analyzed for effluents and water, while a total of fourteen parameters were analyzed for soil. The result showed that effluents from the industry (Promotex) contained a number of contaminants which contaminate the soil and nearby river. Correlation technique was used to determine the degree of relationship between nitrate content and Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) values of the effluents and water; and to determine the degree of relationship between the pH values and the Arsenic content of the soil. There was a generally low negative correlation for all the months for the effluents(-0.58,-0.07,-0.09,and 0.47 respectively for July, August, September and October) and soil (-0.03,-0.66.and- 0.54 for July, August and October respectively) except for the month of September (0.06) that had a very low positive correlation between the pH and Conductivity values of the soil. The student t-test with N+ N- 2 degree of freedom was used to test for the null hypothesis that there is no significance difference between the Alkalinity and Chloride contents of the effluents and water. The environmental implications established that Ele River as well as the soil in the area is polluted at varying levels by effluents from the industry and surrounding environment.




Industrial revolution describes the period of transition from an agricultural society, devoid of mechanization, to a society that is based on industry. This results to an increase in technological and economic activities. The origin of industrial development is traceable to the industrial revolution in the 18th century (Abduli, 1996). Industrial revolution applies to a set of technical, economic and social changes associated with a rapid development of industry. Industrial revolution was a term used to describe changes in the British industry. These changes were in the transformation of the coal, iron and textile industries; the mechanization of cotton and woolen industries and the use of steam power. Britain is therefore regarded as the first country to undergo full-scale industrialization. It changed the structure of the British economy. The social and economic relations of the people were affected. Generally, industrial revolution in itself is the shift, at different times in different countries, from a traditionally agricultural based economy to one based on the mechanized production of manufactured goods in large- scale enterprises (Mato,and . Kasceva 1999).

Every nation strives to industrialize by working towards greatest degree of self-sufficiency within its bounds. To achieve industrialization successfully, countries need a highly productive agricultural sector; functioning markets; a stable government and a conducive socio-political environment and institutional framework. Such successful industrialization will depend to a very large extent on the degree of utilization of locally available raw materials and other inputs, including local manpower.

Industrial activities are not recent in Nigerian history. The Nigerian economy started as a peasant subsistence agricultural economy. Nigeria depended on her cash crops to satisfy the needs of the British colonial masters. By the late 1950s, regional government and needs promoted regional competition and cash crop development. Marketing boards were established to pursue agricultural commodity exports. From


the East flowed rivers of palm oil; from the North, pyramids of groundnut, while in the West were warehouses full of bags of cocoa beans. All these were exported in their raw and unprocessed form.

With the discovery of oil in 1956 by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), Nigeria’s dependence shifted from cash crop economy to an “oil” mono-economy. Oil then accounted for over 90 percent of Nigeria’s foreign exchange. This ushered in the oil boom era. With the crashing of oil prices in the early 1980s, Structural Adjustment became inevitable as Nigeria found it difficult to meet her obligations. The naira began its decline. Local industries became expensive to run. Consequently, there was massive reliance on imported goods. Sequel to this, the Research Department of National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies made some recommendations on the restructuring of Nigeria’s industrial policy.

The experience of industrial activities in Nnewi is not different from the national experience. Nnewi people started with peasant subsistence farming, palm produce trading and transportation business and commercial apprenticeship.

According to the records of the Nnewi Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NCCIMA) there were 40 registered members in 1992. This number rose to 118 by 1995. The period of 1984-1995 witnessed a high growth in the establishment of industries. A significant number of those industries are still in existence, and their activities greatly increased. The increased industrial activities gave rise to industrial pollution.

Industrial pollution is considered one of the major issues in environmental protection. Industries contribute to the pollution of the environment, especially in the absence of regulations that force manufacturers to reduce their hazardous impact.


Industrialization leads to rapidly expanding employment opportunities, a rise of national income per capita, changes in the distribution of income, changes in the domestic living and working condition, changes in social conduct and convention and an overall significant impact on the health and stability of the economy. However, industries contribute to the pollution of the environment through the


discharge of hazardous wastes. These pose potential hazard to humans, plants and animals.

Nnewi is a densely populated town, rich in both commercial and industrial activities. Over the last ten years, it has fastly grown from a village to an urban centre. The rapid urbanization of the town is not without its attendant problems, there is visible urban decay. Urban Development Authorities have not been regulating developmental activities. A major consequence is that industries spring up indiscriminately in all parts of the town without regulation. Production and waste generation go on uncontrollably leading to massive pollution of both water and land resources. PROMOTEX is an example of one such industrial establishment located at the centre of the town. It produces soap and cosmetics and discharges its effluents untreated into the Ele River, a major link to other sources of potable water in the town.

Over the years, successive changes have been observed around this Ele River. These observations have stimulated the interest to undertake this study. Consequent upon this, there is need to study the impact of these effluents on the environment.


The study spanned a period of 4 months (July to October). Soil analysis and effluent analysis were carried out. A total of 26 Parameters were analyzed for the effluent, while a total of 14 Parameters were analyzed for the soil.


AIM: The aim of this study is to characterize the effluent wastes from PROMOTEX industry and ascertain its impact on pollution of the Ele River and its immediate environment.


OBJECTIVES: In order to achieve the aim of the study, the following objectives were pursued. The specific objectives were to:

1.                  ascertain the raw materials and production processes employed at PROMOTEX industry

2.                  establish the physiochemical constituents of effluents from PROMOTEX

3.                  establish the extent of pollutant inload and determine the impact of untreated

effluents from PROMOTEX on the soil and surface water quality of the area.


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