Assessment of the Variations of Ph and Concentrations of Nitrogen and Phosphorus along the Length of River Kokroko in Wenchi

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The largest contribution of unnaturally high nutrients in water bodies is from erosion of soil carrying nitrogen and phosphorus from non-point sources such as fertilized fields, livestock operations, construction sites, pet waste. These nutrients are the main causes of eutrophication (excessive plant growth) in surface water bodies. Objectives of this study were to carry out the initial assessment of the relationship (correlation) if any between the levels pH, Nitrogen and Phosphorus variations along the length of River Kokroko. Two batch samples of water at the following locations: The source, 400m, 800m, 1200m, 1500m, and 1800m downstream of the river were collected for analysis of Nitrogen Phosphorous, pH and temperature. It was observed that concentrations of nutrient generally increased downstream with increasing pH levels. However, the average concentration of nitrogen was below the maximum contaminant level by EPA and WHO, while average concentration of phosphorus was above the recommended level set by US EPA. The lowest pH of 4.36 and 4.14 were recorded the source of the river for sample 1and 2 respectively. The average pH for both batches 1 and 2 samples were below the normal surface water pH of 5.5 and for that matter below 6.5-8.5 (EPA secondary drinking water standard). The pH at the source was far below standard. There seems to be correlation between pH, nutrient and distance. However, there is no enough data to establish any significant proof about this observation.
A thesis submitted to the School of Graduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of the Degree of Master of Science in Environmental Science.