Application of assessment models for pollution and health risk from effluent discharge into a tropical stream: case study of Inyishi River, Southeastern Nigeria

  • Francis Chizoruo IbeEmail author
  • Alexander Iheanyichukwu Opara
  • Bridget Onyekachi Ibe
  • Collins Emeka Amaobi


Pollution and health risk assessment models were used to study the effects of effluents discharged into the Inyishi River, Ikeduru LGA, Imo State, Nigeria. The study aims at investigating the environmental health effects of wastewater effluent discharge from the aluminum extrusion company on the Inyishi River. Samples were collected from both the aluminum extrusion company and Inyishi River and analyzed for physicochemical and trace metal parameters. Models adopted for assessment include transfer factor (TF), contamination factor (Cf), pollution load index (PLI), ecological risk factor (Er), water quality index (WQI), hazard quotient (HQ), and hazard index (HI). The results of the study revealed that pH and TH were within the Nigerian Standard for Drinking Water Quality (NSDWQ) and World Health Organization (WHO) standards. EC values at 2235 ± 0.001 and 105 ± 0.03 μS/cm for S3 and S4 respectively were higher than the permissible standards, while the values of EC at 24.04 ± 0.03, 5.26 ± 0.005, and 0.05 ± 0.01 μS/cm respectively for S1, S2, and SR are within the WHO standard. Very high concentration of SO42− was recorded at S3, while low concentration was measured at S2. Mean values of heavy metal ions studied were within NSDWQ and WHO standards for safe drinking water except for Al, Zn, Cd, Fe, and Mn, with the mean values of metal concentrations observed in the order Al > Fe > Zn > Mn > Cd > Cr. Positive linear correlation based on heavy metal contamination was observed for samples S1 and S2 with SR. High TF values were observed in decreasing order Mn > Cd > Cr > Fe > Zn. Similarly, very high CF was observed for Cd and Al while the PLI was generally high for all the samples. Low Er values were observed for all metals except for Cd, with the mean value of Er observed in the decreasing order Cd ˃ Mn ˃ Zn ˃ Cr. The river water sample generally revealed high WQI and was thus categorized as poor quality. HQ and HI values were below unity (< 1), but might pose health risk to children in cases of prolonged dermal adsorption. In conclusion, the quality of the Inyishi River has been negatively impacted by the wastewater effluent from the aluminum extrusion company. Proper treatment of the river water is therefore recommended before use for domestic purposes as prolonged usage of the untreated water might likely pose serious environmental health risks.


Assessment models Contamination factor Effluent discharge Health risk Iyishi River Pollution load index 



The authors wish to acknowledge the support given by the technical staff of Chemistry Research Laboratory, Imo State University, Owerri. We also appreciate the support from Laboratory Services and Environmental Research Department/UNIDO RAC for Pollution Monitoring and Assessment, Ministry of Environment and Petroleum, Imo State, Nigeria, for their assistance during the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Francis Chizoruo Ibe
    • 1
    Email author
  • Alexander Iheanyichukwu Opara
    • 2
  • Bridget Onyekachi Ibe
    • 3
  • Collins Emeka Amaobi
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryImo State UniversityOwerriNigeria
  2. 2.Department of GeologyFederal University of TechnologyOwerriNigeria
  3. 3.Department of Health EducationAlvan Ikoku Federal College of Education OwerriOwerriNigeria

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