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HYDROCHEMICAL CHARACTERISTICS AND QUALITY ASSESSMENT OF GROUNDWATER FROM SHALLOW WELLS IN GBOLOKO AREA, CENTRAL NIGERIA
Physiochemical assessment of shallow groundwater in Gboloko area was carried out to determine its suitability for drinking and irrigation purposes. Eighteen (18) groundwater samples were collected from different rural communities’ wells and subjected field measurements of physical parameters followed by chemical analyses using ICP-MS, ICP-ES, Calorimetry and Turbimetry methods. The results show that pH of the groundwater ranged from 5.1 to 8.6 (mean 6.6) which indicates the groundwater is slightly acidic and slightly alkaline. EC and TDS varied from 60 to1367mg/L (mean 277.4mg/L) and 53 to 995mg/L (mean 206.5mg/L) respectively. The concentration of major cations were in the order of Ca2+>Na+> Mg2+> K+ while that of anion were in the order of HCO3->Cl-> SO4-> NO3- .Five hydrochemical facies were delineated from Piper plot; they are CaHCO3, CaNaHCO3, CaMgCl, CaCl, and NaHCO3 water type. CaHCO3 water is the dominant facies which represents water of recharge zone while CaNaHCO3 and CaCl are the least. The presence of NaHCO3 CaNaHCO3, and CaMgCl water type shows hydrochemical processes such as ion exchange and linear mixing. The drinking water quality assessment indicates the values for all the hydrochemical parameters are within the maximum permissible standard by WHO, 2006 except for two locations where nitrate concentrations are above the guideline value. The nitrate contamination observed at those locations may be attributed to leachates from domestic wastes and agricultural activities. Although nitrate contamination was expected to be rampant in groundwater of the area Irrigation water quality indices showed that the groundwater is ranged from mostly suitable to unsuitable.
Groundwater quality, Gboloko, Hydrochemical Facies, Irrigation water
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