Assessment of Groundwater Quality in Bogoso, A Mining Community in the Western Region of Ghana

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There is the general perception that mining activities have severe adverse effects on the environment, particularly groundwater quality. Based on this, groundwater quality in the Bogoso area was studied because the area has experienced mining activities over a long period. It is believed that the mining activities have imparted negatively on the quality of ground water. This study aimed at assessing the quality of groundwater in Bogoso, focusing on pollution from heavy metals. Groundwater samples from ten (10) boreholes were collected and analysed for their quality using recommended techniques. The concentrations obtained for the parameters were compared with WHO guidelines for water quality. The results showed wide variations in the parameters investigated. pH values ranged from 5.10 at BB4 to 6.32 at BB2, which was lower than the WHO standard. The EC ranged from the lowest of 393.33μs/cm at BB1 to the highest of 863.33μs/cm indicating a higher EC value than the recommended standard. Heavy metal concentrations in boreholes were generally low. Results obtained for Zn, Cu, As, Cd and Pb were below the recommended limit by WHO. The concentration of Mn and Fe in the samples were found to be higher than the recommended limit for drinking water by WHO. Result obtained for Fe in the study ranged from 0.016mg/l to 1.285mg/l. Sample points BB1, BB2, BB9 and BB10 recorded values above the WHO standards of 0.03mg/l for drinking water. Concentration of Manganese also ranged from 0.079mg/l to 0.377mg/l. This significant difference was observed at samples points BB4 and BB10. In summary, the concentrations obtained for the parameters studied showed that the sampled boreholes in Bogoso have characteristics that correspond to fresh ground water.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Theoretical and Applied Biology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in partial fulfillment of the requirements of Master of Science degree in Environmental Science, 2015