Influence of Third Cemetery Location on the Quality of Domestic and Groundwater Resources in Benin City, Nigeria
The present study investigates impact of burial practices on water quality in Benin City, Nigeria by collecting groundwater samples from boreholes located by the peripheral area of Third Cemetery in Benin City and a reference site approximately 4 km away using standard methods. With the exception of SO4, CaCO3, Fe and DO, the concentrations of other parameters were higher in water samples obtained from the peripheral area of Third Cemetery than that from the reference site. Principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that pH, Fe, and CaCO3 were differentiating parameters related to reference site, similar condition was attributed to SO4 and Mg for site 2 and Pb, Mn, Cu, Ni, Zn and DO for sites 1 & 3. Cluster analysis (CA) placed the reference site as outlier to other sites. Higher concentrations of Cl, NO3, Na, K and BOD5 in samples obtained by cemetery peripheral when compared to reference site and positive correlations among these parameters are indications of impacts of decomposing activities in cemetery upon water quality in underlying aquifer. Limiting water quality index (WQI) computation to pH, EC, Cl, NO3, SO4,
Na and BOD5 showed that quality of groundwater obtained from cemetery peripheral is not good for domestic uses.
Keywords: Cemetery, Groundwater, Physicochemical, Multivariate, Water Quality Index