Open Access Original Research Article

Markers of Environmental Health: Nickel and Chromium Levels in Soil and Vegetation around a Steel Recycling Facility in Southwest Nigeria

O. O. Salami, O. O. Awotoye, O. K. Owoade

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1060-1070
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/5733

Aims: To mark the environmental health status in the vicinity of a steel recycling facility in southwestern Nigeria using Nickel and Chromium levels in the top soil and leaves of Chromolaena odorata.
Methodology: Conventional methods were used to determine some soil parameters (pH and electrical conductivity in 1:1 soil: deionized water; percentage organic carbon using chromic acid oxidation method and particle size analysis using hydrometer method). The metal content in the soil and plant samples were analysed using the Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer after digestion and extraction.
Results: The results of the soil within the factory showed pH values of 7.50 – 8.80 and reduced organic matter content indicating alkaline conditions. Electrical conductivity values were comparatively higher for soils within the factory (423 – 1550 µs/m) than soils outside the factory (146 – 226 µs/m) showing presence of some soluble salts in the soil. The levels of Ni and Cr in the soil were higher within the factory than outside of the factory. Nickel concentrations of the soil increased with increasing distance from the factory up to 200 m. Similar trends occurred for Cr in the eastern side of the factory where the detectable concentrations (2.29±0.05 – 33.26±0.02 mgkg –1) was observed. The Ni content in the soil around the factory ranged from: North (0.76±0.01 – 1.46±0.06 mgkg –1); East (0.19±0.05 – 2.68±0.04 mgkg –1); West (0.21 ± 0.01 – 1.46±0.07 mgkg –1) and South (0.22±0.02 – 1.89±0.01 mgkg –1). Within the factory however, the scrap yard contained high concentration of Cr 24.15±0.04 mgkg –1 while the soils from the dumpsite for sorted wastes contained elevated concentrations of Ni (73.17±0.02 mgkg –1). Nickel and chromium content in the plant leaves in this study ranged from 1.40 – 3.60 mgkg –1 and 0.40 – 1.5 mgkg –1.
Conclusion: Further increase in the Cr and Ni levels in the soil and plants of the study site poses a potential health hazard to animals that graze the area and man through consumption of forage and agronomic crops cultivated around the factory by peasant farmers.

Open Access Original Research Article

Equilibria and Kinetic Studies on the Adsorption of Cadmium onto Cameroonian Wetland Clays

C. M. Kede, MA Etoh, P. P. Ndibewu, H. M. Ngomo, P. M. Ghogomu

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1071-1088
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/4299

The possible use of clay (AL2Si3O5(OH)4, locally mined (Make pe, Cameroon), as an adsorbent, for the removal of cadmium from wastewater was investigated. Spectroscopic studies including FTIR, elemental analysis (EA), XRPD, and SEM were used for its characterization. The effect of different variables, namely: concentration of metal ions, pH and time of interaction were studied. The adsorptive property of clay was tested using Cd(II) as the model adsorbate. Equilibrium data was examined using a comparison of linear isotherm models. The adsorption behavior was well described by the linear Langmuir isotherm model, showing a monolayer adsorption capacity for Cd(II). The kinetic rates were modeled by using the Lagergren-first-order, pseudo-second-order and intra particle model. The pseudo-second-order model was found to explain the adsorption kinetics most effectively. It was also found that the pore diffusion played an important role in the adsorption and intraparticle diffusion was the rate-limiting step during the first 30 min. of interaction.

Open Access Original Research Article

Socio-economic Determinants of the Adoption of Electronic Banking in Abia State of Nigeria

P. O. O. Nto, C. P. O. Nto, J. A. Mbanasor

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1089-1099
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/7373

This study was conducted to examine the socio-economic determinants of e-banking in Abia State of Nigeria. The specific objectives were to (a) examine the level of awareness of the various products of e-banking (b) examine the socio-economic determinants of users (c) identify the challenges associated with the adoption of e-banking.Data for the study were collected from 90 bank customers drawn from Aba metropolis of Abia State. The data were analyzed using mean, frequency table, percentage and discriminate model. The result of the discriminate analysis indicates that the two most important socio-economic variables that explain group difference were ability to use e-banking and level of education with discriminate score of 1.398 and 1.086 respectively. It is therefore recommended that Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should carryout adequate public enlightenment to educate the people on how to use the various e-banking products and services.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effects of Vitamin E and Selenium on Some Blood Parameters of Trypanosoma brucei brucei Infected Rats

D. P. Yakubu, A. Dawet, N. A. Olaleye

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1100-1108
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/5732

Aims: To determine the effects of dietary supplementation of vitamin E and selenium on infection rate, pack cell volume (PCV) and white blood cell (WBC) of T. brucei brucei infected rats.
Study Design: Feeding of rats with varying levels of vitamin E and selenium to determine their effects on parasitaemia, packed cell volume and white blood cells of infected rats.
Place and Duration of Study: Animal House, Department of Pharmacology, University of Jos, Jos, Nigeria. January 2009.
Methodology: Thirty healthy albino rats were randomly divided into five groups (1-5) of six animals each. The PCV and WBC of the experimental animals were determined before they were inoculated with 0.2 ml of infected red blood cell containing 1.5 x 105 T. brucei brucei on the first day. The rats were fed with standard chick grower mash containing varied quantities of vitamin E and selenium for seventeen days. Group 1 (control) were given diet without vitamin E and selenium, group 2 were fed with diet containing vitamin E only, group 3 were fed with diet containing selenium only, group 4 were fed diet containing 0.3 mg vitamin E and 80 mg selenium and group 5 had diet containing 0.5 mg vitamin E and 100 mg selenium.
Results: There is a significant (P=.05) decrease in parasitaemia of rats fed varying levels of vitamin E and selenium. The PCV increased significantly (P=.05) in rats fed with diet containing vitamin E and selenium relative to the control. There was no significant (P =.05) change in WBC of rats fed with supplements and that of the control group.
Conclusion: The study showed that vitamin E and selenium supplementation significantly decreased parasitaemia resulting in delay of death in the rats, increased the PCV, while there was no significantly effect on WBC.

Open Access Original Research Article

Traffic Kinematic Waves at Road Hump Zone: Perceptions and Analysis

J. Ben-Edigbe, O. Johnson

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1109-1118
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/7621

Aims: Traffic kinematic and shockwaves have often been used interchangeably in any literatures.The paper investigated traffic kinematic waves at road hump zone and their shockwave implications.
Study Design: Road hump impact study.
Place and Duration of Study: The study was carried out at locations along Jalan Universiti, Skudai, Johor Malaysia, between April 2012 and October 2012.
Methodology: Based on the hypothesis that road hump cannot be held solely accountable for traffic shockwave occurrences, with and without road hump impact study was carried out at four sites in Malaysia. Road section was divided into two sections A (without road hump) and B (with road hump). Traffic volume, speed, headway, gaps and vehicle types were collected with automatic traffic counters continuously for eight weeks. Empirical data were supplemented with design data supplied by ministry of works. Data were collated and compared.
Results: Results show that road humps are effective speed reduction mechanism. Although speed reductions were recorded, traffic shockwaves were not recorded and also there was no evidence to suggest that significant kinematic waves were caused at road humps. Differences between traffic shockwave and kinematic wave results affirmed that traffic shockwave will only occur at the capacity constrained section of flow/density curve.
Conclusion: The paper asserted that traffic kinematic wave and shockwave propagations are related but not the same and concluded that road humps cannot be held solely accountable for traffic shockwaves. Further, that traffic shockwave is more likely to be caused by the led driver’s erratic behaviour on approach to the barrier.

Open Access Original Research Article

Bacteriological and Physicochemical Quality of Hand-dug Well Water Used for Drinking and Domestic Purposes in Dareta Village, Anka, Nigeria

C. Hammuel, U. U. Udiba, H. H. Raplong, M. L. Batari

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1119-1127
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/6965

Aim: To determine the bacteriological quality and physicochemical properties of hand-dug well water used as sole source of water for domestic consumption in Dareta village, Anka, Nigeria.
Study Design: In this study ten (10) different well water samples were collected from Dareta village for bacterial assessment and the physicochemical properties.
Place and Duration of Study: This study was carried out in National Research Institute for Chemical Technology, Zaria, Nigeria, between July and November, 2012.
Methodology: The samples were also cultured into bacteriological peptone water for enrichment. The culture in bacteriological peptone water was diluted in distilled water using serial dilution for total bacterial count. Some biochemical tests were carried out to identify the pathogens, also MPN was done for total coliform count. The temperature and TDS of the water samples were measured using HACH conductivity/TDS meter and the pH was conducted using Lutron pH 201 meter.
 The physicochemical properties of the water indicated that the temperature was 26-29ºC, pH ranged from 5.82 - 6.65 and total dissolved solid ranged from 60 - 380 mg/ml. The result of heterotrophic plate count showed bacterial count range from 33 × 102 - 110 × 104cfu/ml. The most probable number result was from 23 - 1600MPN/ml. The pathogens isolated were Salmonella spp (40%), Escherichia coli (80%) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (50%).
Conclusion: In conclusion, the presence of these pathogens in the water indicates that none of the water used for domestic purposes in this village meet the maximum acceptable value.

Open Access Original Research Article

Over the Counter Sale of Prescription Only Medication in Abu Dhabi, UAE: Law Enforcement or Health Ethics?

David Achanfuo Yeboah, Tracey Maree Yeboah

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1128-1137
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/6964

Aims: Ethics is the heart of health care [1] and there is an expectation that health care providers and other professionals will adopt a degree of ethics in their professional duties and practice. The aim of the study is to investigate the over the counter sale of prescription medicines in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
Study Design: The methodology involves a triangulation approach including the survey of selected health professionals and patients and the participant observation methodology covering the direct observation of selling and buying of medication in pharmacies.
Results: The results indicate that the problem is endemic in the Emirates and that, while the health authorities assert that it is a law enforcement issue, other respondents agree that there is an inherent and underlying element of professional ethics for Pharmacists. Others even think it is a cultural issue. The study concludes that the practice has both ethical and legal dimensions.
Conclusion: The study concludes further that the practice is endemic and that, on the basis of the reasons given by buyers and sellers of medications, a comprehensive approach may be necessary to identify strategies to alleviate the situation.

Open Access Original Research Article

Combined Use of Electromagnetic and Magnetic Survey for Hydrogeophysical Characterization of Ijapo Housing Estate, Akure

O. S. Ogungbemi, M. I. Oladapo

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1138-1148
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/6467

Very Low Frequency Electromagnetic (VLF-EM) and ground magnetic studies were carried out in Ijapo Housing Estate, Akure, with the aim of delineating hydrogeologic associated structures. The area is underlain by the precambrian basement complex rocks of southwestern Nigeria. VLF-EM profiling was undertaken along 19 traverses with lengths ranging from 180 to 1,200m. Ground magnetic data were acquired along 35 traverses with lengths varying between 120 and 1,060 m. VLF-EM data were plotted as profiles and also inverted into 2D-sections using Karous-Hjelt filtering software. Ground magnetic data were reduced and inversed using automated euler-deconvolution software to estimate depths to basement. VLF-EM readings vary from – 110.3 to + 99.9% in the filtered real and imaginary components. VLF-EM depth-structure map enables the classification of the area into zones of shallow and deep fractures. Relative magnetic values vary from -1290.38 to +835.38 nT. Estimated depth to basement from the geomagnetic section was used to generate magnetic depth-structure map which enabled the classification of the study area into shallow and deep fracture zones. Correlations of results show that area classified as deep structure zone from VLF-EM coincide fairly well with that of ground magnetic. This is the high groundwater potential zone. Groundwater development programme within crystalline basement complex should be limited to high groundwater potential zone, because of the localized nature of its occurrence. Therefore, detailed geophysical survey should be carried out prior to drilling.

Open Access Original Research Article

Nutrient Composition and Potential Contribution of Winged Termites (Marcrotermes bellicosus Smeathman) to Micronutrient Intake of Consumers in Nigeria

O. T. Adepoju, O. A. Omotayo

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1149-1158
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/4420

Introduction: Edible insects, which are generally abundant, nutrient-dense, marketable, and economically valuable constitute important part of the diet of large population of Nigerians. Roasted Winged termite (Macrotermes bellicosus) is a popular insect relished by people living the traditional lifestyle, especially children, and is eaten as snack. Little is known about the nutritional importance and potential nutrient contribution of this insect.
Aim: To determine the nutrient and antinutrient composition of Macrotermes bellicosus as a means of reducing micronutrient malnutrition among the consumers.
Methods: Winged termites were collected during their nocturnal swarming and divided into two portions. One portion was used for fresh sample determination and the other portion roasted for ten minutes, de-winged and kept refrigerated inside a plastic container till when needed for analysis. Its proximate, mineral, vitamin and antinutrient composition were determined using official methods of analyses of AOAC, atomic absorption spectrophotometric method, and spectrophotometric methods (vitamins and antinutrients respectively).
Results: Roasted Macrotermes bellicosus as consumed contained 4.3g moisture, 36.7g protein, 34.3g fat, 23.2g carbohydrates, 1.2g ash, 96.30mg sodium, 162.50mg potassium, 226.50mg calcium, 358.50mg phosphorus, 1.42mg iron, 3.13mg zinc, 330.42µg retinol equivalent, and yielded 551.2 kcal of energy /100g portion. Level of phytates, oxalates, trypsin inhibitors, saponins and tannins was very low (< 0.3mg/100g portion), and cannot probably cause any health hazard or malabsorption when consumed in large quantities. 100g portion of roasted Macrotermes bellicosus can contribute 24.0% energy, 58.3% protein, 22.7% calcium, 51.2% phosphorus, 20.9% zinc and 33.0% retinol equivalent (vitamin A) and 60.0% of vitamin E to Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) of adult consumers.
Conclusion: Macrotermes bellicosus is a highly nutritious insect, and it can serve as good source of protein, calcium, iron and zinc for its Nigerian consumers.

Open Access Review Article

An Overview of Energy Sector and Wind Power Potential in Malaysia

S. M. Lawan, W. A. W. Z. Abidin, W. Y. Chai, A. Baharun, T. Masri

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1042-1059
DOI: 10.9734/BJAST/2014/7589

With the new era of industrialization and urbanization, the use of renewable energy is a solution to resolve the impacts of the current dependency on fossil based fuels and hike in fuel prices in the world. The rapid economic development in recent years has led to the energy increase demand in Malaysia and the situation is expected to grow in the near future. The country energy sector is heavily dependent on fossil based fuels for electrical energy generation. Currently, wind energy systems are swiftly gaining recognition as one of the best sources of renewable energy because of its emission free characteristics. This paper reviews the recent scenario and the future expected energy situation in Malaysia. Wind energy resources assessment and potential in Malaysia is also discussed.