Tsafe A. ., Hassan L. G., Sahabi D. M., Alhassan Y. and Bala B. M.
Mining of solid minerals has been identified as an entry point of heavy metals into the environment consequently polluting various components of the environment such as water and air. Five water samples and a kilogram each of selected solid minerals (Gold, tantalite and columbite) from one of the gold mines of Zamfara state were analyzed for mineral and heavy metals (Mn, Zn, Pb, Mg, Al, Cd, Cr, Ni, Co and Cu) using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer and Energy Dispersive X-Ray. The results revealed high concentration of Fe in columbite (2232.5±0.72) and tantalite (2202.5±0.92) higher than gold (108.1±2.64) while other elements were as follows; Mn (9.174±0.217), (1.56±0.43) and (0.56±0.83) in gold, columbite and tantalite respectively. Zn (2.67±0.104, 0.06±0.28 and 0.06±0.10) in gold, tantalite and columbite respectively while lead (87.02±1.029, 6.84±0.19 and 0.067±0.39) in gold, columbite and tantalite in that order. Tantalite was richer in bicarbonate mg/l (7.5), chloride mg/l (420) and sulphate mg/l (268.36) but lower in nitrate mg/l (750) than other solid minerals gold and columbite Heavy metals in water indicated significant contamination with water properties (Nitrate, calcium, conductivity and pH) and metals (Pb, 16.76±12.23; Cd 0.48±0.08) were higher than WHO standards. Water properties tested showed high temperature (19.10±0.01), pH was (5.30±0.15) and conductivity was (29.73±0.64). The study concluded that there was pollution of water body especially for toxic metals like Pb and Cd.
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