Saturday, 14 November 2015

Levels of Nitrogen Dioxide and Sulphur Dioxide Measured Around Roadside Gardens in Port Harcourt Metropolis

Abstract— Levels of nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide around roadside gardens in Port Harcourt metropolis were determined at 0m and 50m from road junctions using portable hand held Multi RAE PLUS (PGM-50), a programmable multi gas monitor with an electrochemical sensor for the detection of Sulphur dioxide and ITX Multi Gas monitor for the detection of Nitrogen dioxide. The results showed that the concentrations of NO2 and SO2 ranged from 0 – 0.3ppm in both seasons. The mean concentration of SO2 at 0m and high traffic density stations were higher than the mean concentration at 50m and low traffic density stations. The difference in mean concentrations between dry and rainy seasons, traffic density and distance were not significant for NO2 but significant for SO2. The concentration of NO2 and SO2 recorded at the study stations exceeded the permissible limits of 0.004ppm and 0.01ppm respectively, recommended by the Federal Ministry of Environment and therefore poses serious threat to the environment particularly small farms and gardens around major roads. The levels of NO2 and SO2 around the gardens were influenced by traffic density, seasonal variations and distances from major roads, therefore authorities should embark on sensitization and enlightenment campaigns; farming activities and raw consumption of exposed vegetables, crops and fruits should be discouraged in the study areas.

Keywords Nitrogen dioxide, Sulphur dioxide, garden, roadside, traffic density, plants.

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