The Physico-Chemical and Bacteriological Characterisation of Alternate Water Sources: Implication on Drinking, Domestic and Agricultural Uses

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Published on International Journal of Biology, Physics & Matematics
ISSN: 2721-3757, Volume 2, Issue 1, page 11 – 49
Publication Date: 12 February 2019

Fondzenyuy Vitalis Fonfo, Kengni Lucas, Temgoua Emile & Kahnji Iren Njoyim
Faculty of Science, Department of Earth Sciences
University of Dschang
Dschang, Cameroon

Journal Full Text PDF: The Physico-Chemical and Bacteriological Characterisation of Alternate Water Sources: Implication on Drinking, Domestic and Agricultural Uses (Case in Jakiri Subdivision of Bui Division, North West Region of Cameroon).

Water quality charaterisation of some alternate sources in Jakiri subdivision in the North West Region of Cameroon were studied for suitability in drinking, domestic and agricultural needs. Twenty three water samples were collected, with four samples from a water catchment in 2016 and two in 2017, six boreholes (BH), two open wells (OW), three streams (ST) and four rivers (RW) in 2018. Two rain water samples were also collected for analysis in 2018. The water catchment was sampled in the heart of the dry season, (February) transition to the rainy season, (March), the heart of the rainy season (August) and finally in transition to the dry season ( November) 2016. The chemical properties of major ions, heavy metals and bacteriological content were analysed.The cations were in a decreasing order; Ca> Mg >Na and K. HCO3- was the dominant anion with NO3-, SO42- and Cl- had a very negligible concentration. The water facies in Jakiri were mainly Ca-HCO3, and Ca-Mg-HCO3. Acidolysis was essential in the control of weathering of silicate minerals in the water sources. Heavy minerals had insignificant concentration in the water samples and revealed an absence of industrial activities and aspects that induced heavy metals within the neighborhood of the water sources. Iron and Al with average concentration of 0.18mg/l and0.14mg/l respectively were identified. The major ions, pH, Magnesium Hazard (MH), Permeability Index (PI), Percent sodium (% Na), Total Dissolved Solids (TDS), Residual Sodium Carbonate (RSC) and Sodium Absorption Ration (SAR), all plotted within ranges recommended for their uses when likened to standard norms such as World Health Organisation (WHO), Swiss norms, Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), United States Salinity Laboratory (USSL), and the European Union (EU). Exceptionally, Total Hardness (TH) had a value in all the sources higher than the WHO (2004) stipulated norm. The water source recommendations for irrigation from the samples revealed that all the sources were suitable for irrigation. Bacteriological analyses expressed bacteria in 90% of the water sources, making them unsuitable for drinking. All the sources required treatment before drinking as a rule. Natural geology and anthropogenic activities greatly influenced the water quality; consequently, strategies must be conceived to protect these water sources.

Keywords: Water sources, quality, suitability, jakiri subdivision.

Jakiri sub division of Bui division in the North West Region of Cameroon is an area with highly subsistent agricultural practices, with a rapid economic growth associated with expansion in urbanization, having as consequence more demand of water for agriculture and domestic needs. Because of inadequate availability of water to meet human demands, alternative water sources are sort to supplement the ever rising water needs. Poor waste disposal and provision of water to most homes has compromised water usage. Pit latrines with open bottoms are very common and create localized flow conditions that present great risks of using ground water (Tanawa et al., 2002; Temgoua 2006). Water contamination is viewed as a serious problem in the rural and semi urban areas in Jakiri subdivision.
The unique Chemistry of groundwater is due to chemical interactions that recharge the system, (Back; 1996 and Drever; 1997), as a consequence of soil- water interactions, dissolution of primary minerals, rock- water interactions and anthropogenic sources (Stallard and Edmond 1983; Faure 1988; Subba Rao 2002). Geochemical evolution detailed in some works; (Garrels and Mackenzie 1967; Paces 1973; Sarin et al., 1989), and other works, focused on ground water quality monitoring and suitability for drinking, domestic and agricultural purposes; (Rajmodan et al .,2000; Garg et al.,2009; Nagarajan et al.,2009) laid an inspiration for this study. In these works, ground water quality evaluation and monitoring of its usability are revealed as indispensible for a sustainable management of water resources. Parameters, like; percent sodium (% Na), sodium absorption ratio (SAR),residual sodium carbonate (RSC) Wilcox and United States Salinity Laboratory (USSL) classifications have been used in evaluation of ground water suitability for divergent uses (Richards 1954; Rajmohan et al., 1997; Rajmohan et al.,2000; Al-Bassm and Al- Rumikhani 2003).
This study aimed to diagnose the state of ground water quality in alternative water sources in Jakiri subdivision, in order to obtain their suitability for different purposes. The data was expected to enhance an understanding of the factors that regulate ground water quality in the water sources, hence contributing in a sustainable management of ground water resources in Jakiri subdivision. Little recorded works were available for water quality prior to this evaluation leaving a void expected to be filled at the end of this study.

2.1. Geographical location of the area of study
The geographical location of Jakiri subdivision in Bui division of the North West Region of Cameroon is shown in Figures 1a, 1b, 1c and 1d with the sampling points. The climate in Jakiri subdivision is of tropical type prevalent in the Mountainous area west of Cameroon, and is characterized by two seasons; the dry and rainy seasons: (Olivry, 1976 and Suchel, 1988).

2.2 Geologic context.
Geologically, Jakiri subdivision is part of the Bamenda highlands, a northward extension of the Bambouto Mountain part of the continental Cameroon Volcanic Line (C.V.L).Basalts and trachytes are dominant geologic formations in Jakiri subdivision similar to those of the Bambouto Mountain as expressed in works of (Gountie, 2004, 2011; Youmen, 1994; Tabue 2000 and Kagou et al., 2010). The Bambouto Mountain is proven to be of volcanic origin which is same with its northern extension the Bamenda highlands in which Jakiri subdivision our study area was found. These observations are in conformity with the field realities. Both in Jakiri subdivision and the Bambouto Mountain trachytes, and basalts are the dominant rocktypes . To these rocks associated are phonolites, rhyolites and ignimbrites. The minerals inherent in these rocks were presented in Table 1…………

2.3. Materials
A Multiparameter Hanna instrument, HI 83200 bench photometer with accompanying reagents that can measure 44 parameters was used. A Global Positioning System (G.P.S) to locate precisely the geographical coordinates of the sampling sites, a combined kit (a Hanna instrument) to obtain the electrical conductivity, temperature and pH of water at each site was acquired. Bacteriological setup for culturing the samples and incubation was present in the analysis laboratory. A digital camera for some relevant illustrations in this work was needed. A proper choice was made for plastic bottles of about 100 ml capacity with firm corks. These bottles were made of well-insulated plastic material that prevented any heat transfer. Some of these materials are presented in Fig 3. A total of 23 samples were collected and analysed in Jakiri subdivision ……..