International E-publication: Publish Projects, Dissertation, Theses, Books, Souvenir, Conference Proceeding with ISBN.  International E-Bulletin: Information/News regarding: Academics and Research

A preliminary survey of Heavy metals concentrations in Children playground within Owerri Metropolis, Imo State, Nigeria

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Environmental Technology, Federal University of Technology Owerri, Imo State, P. M. B. 1526, NIGERIA
  • 2 Department of Pure and Industrial Chemistry, College of Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Port Harcourt, P. M. B. 5323, Port Harcourt, NIGERIA

Res.J.chem.sci., Volume 5, Issue (11), Pages 1-8, November,18 (2015)


Pollution of children’s playgrounds by heavy metals from various anthropogenic sources has received little attention despite the fact that Nigeria recently recorded the worst heavy metals disaster involving children. In this study eight heavy metal concentrations in a total of thirty six soil samples collected from nine playgrounds in south eastern Nigeria were investigated using the A Analyst 400 Perkin Elmer. Results of maximum metal concentrations revealed the trend; Zn (168.74 mg/Kg) > Ni (94.48 mg/Kg) > Cu (76.89 mg/Kg) > Cr (27.23 mg/Kg) > Co (13.21mg/Kg) > Pb (6.52 mg/Kg) > Mn (8.86 mg/Kg) > Cd (0.93mg/Kg). Though highest, Zn concentrations were only 1.01% to 2.4% of Queensland threshold and WHO standards values and so metal concentrations were considered low. Therefore based on the present results public school playgrounds within Owerri municipal do not pose a serious pollution threat. However the accumulation of these metals in school playgrounds could result to contamination and pollution problems in the long run.


  1. Annao W.L., Nurdans D.A.K, Cheung CC and Mingh W., Heavy Metals Concentrations of Surface Dust from Waste Recycling and Its Human Health Implications in Southeast China, Environ. Sc. and Tech., 42(7), 2671-2680 (2008)
  2. Nriagu J., Oleru T.N., Cudjoe C. and Chine A., Lead poisoning of children in Africa, III. Kaduna, Nigeria, The Sc. of the Tot. Environ., 197, 13-19 (1997)
  3. Aliyu M., Zakari Y.I, Ibeanu I.G.E. and Akpa T.C., Evaluation of lead concentration levels of children’s playground in Kaduna state schools, Bayero Journ. of Pure and Appl. Sc., (2), 105–109 (2009)
  4. UNICEF Childhood Lead Poisoning: Information for Advocacy and Action. 3 UN Plaza, New York, NY 10017, U.S.A. (1997)
  5. Dilek G.J. Maynard., Heavy Metal contamination in highway soils: Comparision of Corpus Christi, Texas and Cincinnati Ohio Shows Organic Matter is key to Molity. Clean Techn. Cinimatics, Environ Policy, 235-245 (2003)
  6. De-Miguel E, Iribarren I, Chacon E, Ordonez A and Charlesworth S., Risk-based evaluation of the exposure of children to trace elements in playgrounds in Madrid (Spain), Chemosphere, 66, 505–513 (2007)
  7. Li X.D., Poon C.S. and Liu P.S., Heavy metal contamination of urban soils and street dusts in Hong Kong, Appl. Geochem., 16, 1361–1368 (2001)
  8. Chen T.B., Zheng Y.M., Chen H. and Zheng G.D., Background concentrations of soil heavy metals in Beijing, Chinese Journal of Environmental Science, 25, 117–22(2004)
  9. Nriagu J.O., A silent epidemic of environmental metal poisoning, Environtl. Pollut., 50, 139-161 (1988)
  10. Alloway B.J and Ayres D.C., Chemical principles of Environmental pollution, 2nd edition, Blackie Academic and professional, London, 157–245 (2002)
  11. Orisakwe O.E., Nduka J.K., Amadi C.N., Dike D.O. and Bede O., Heavy metals health risk assessment for population via consumption of food crops and fruits in Owerri, South Eastern, Nigeria, Chem. Cent. Journ., 77 (2012)
  12. Jaradat Q.M., Monani K.A., Contamination of roadside soil, plant and air with heavy metal in Jordan, a comparative study, Turkish .J. Chem, 23, 209-220 (1999)
  13. Alloway B.J., Heavy Metal in solid 2nd edition, Blackie and Sons, Glasgo, 96-153 (1995)
  14. Ljung KO Schinus and E. Otabbong, Metal in soil of children’s Urban environment in the small northern European city of Uppsala, Sc. of the Totl. Environ., 366(2-3), 749–759 (2006)
  15. Horsfall M. Jnr. and Spiff A.I., Principles of Environmental pollution, and toxicology and waste management, Onyoma Research Publications, 16-17 (2013)
  16. Huo X., Peng L., Xu X.J., Zheng L.K., Qiu B., Qi Z.L., Zhang B., Han D., Piao Z.X., Elevated blood lead levels of children in Guiyu, an electronic waste recycling town in China, Environ.Health Perspect, 15, 1113–1117 (2007)
  17. Chukuma C.S., Evaluating Baseline data for Trace elements, pH, organic matter content and bulk density in agricultural soils in Nigeria, Water, air, soil pollut., 86, 13-34 (1996)
  18. Horsfall M. Jnr., Chemistry and heavy metals are Janus faced, An inaugural lecture series no. 81st, Department of pure and Industrial chemistry, university of Port Harcourt, November (2011)
  19. Biasioli M, Grcman H, Kralj T, Madrid F, Daz-Barrientos E and Ajmone-Marsan F., Potentially toxic elements contamination in urban soils: A comparison of three European cities, J. Environ. Qual., 36, 70–79(2007)
  20. Awofolu O.R., A survey of trace metals in vegetation, soil and lower animals along some selected major and minor roads in metropolitan city of Lagos, Environmental Monitoring and Assessment,105, 431–47 (2005)
  21. Lim M.C.H, Auoko G.A. and Morawska L., Characterization of elemental and polycyclic aromatic hydro carbon composition of Urban air in Brisbane, Homaspheric Environment, 39(3), 463–476 (2005)
  22. Mielke H.W., Multiple metal accumulation as a factor in learning achievement within various New Orleans elmentary school communities, Environtl. Res., 97(1),67-75 (2004)
  23. Bearer C.F., Enviromental health hazards how children are different from Adults: The future of Children Critical issues for Children and Youths, 5, 2 (1995)
  24. Sumer/ fall.http://www future of children.Org/pubs-info 28-25/ pubs-info.htm? docid=70953 24.America Academy of Pediatrics, children’s Health and the Environment, A global perspective. A source guide for the health sector, WHO. http:// (2005)
  25. America Academy of Pediatric Committee on Environmental Health. 2nd ed. Etzel RA, Ed Eik Grove village, IL 297 (2003)
  26. Kord B., Mataji A. and Babaie S., Pine (Pinus eldarica Medw.) needles as indicator for heavy metals pollution, International Journal of Environmental Science and Technology, 7,79–84 (2010)
  27. Onweremadu E.U., Amaechi J.U. and Ndukwu B.N., Vertical Distribution of Cadmium and Lead on Soils Affected by Metropolitan Refuse Disposal in Owerri, Southeastern Nigeria, Iranica Journ. of Ergy and Environ., 2(1), 62-67 (2011)
  28. Verla E.N, Verla A.W., C.A Ike-Amadi and Odoemelam S.A., Heavy Metals Status in Soils of Industrial and Residential Areas of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria, Paper In Proceedings of the of 35th AnnualInternational Conference of Chem. Soc. of Nig., at Federal University of technology Owerri, Imo State in, 1, 342-347 (2012)
  29. Princewill C.O., Scholastica N.N. and Jaime A.T.S., Heavy metal pollution in soil and plants at bone char site, Toxicological and Environmental Chemistry,93(10),1925-1933 (2011)
  30. Needleman H.L., Low level lead exposure and childrens intelligence: A quantitative and critical review of modern studies. Proc. 6th Int. Conf. on Heavy Metals in the Environment, New Orleans. Volume 1. CEP Consultants Ltd., Edinburg, 1-8 (1987)
  31. Jarosinska D., Biesiada M. and Miszynska-Grace M., Enviromental burden of disease due to lead in Urban Children from Silesia, Poland, Sc. of the Totl. Environ., 367, 71-79 (2006)
  32. Zhu W., Bian B. and Li. L., Heavy metal contamination of road: Deposition sedimemt in a medium size city of China, Environ. Monit. and Assess., 147, 1-3, 171-181 (2008)
  33. Stutter M.I., Deeks L.E. and Billet M.F., Spatial variability in soil ion exchange chemistry in a granitic upland catchment, Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J.,68, 1304-1314 (2004)
  34. Akpoveta O.V, Osakwe S.A, Okoh BE, Otuya BO., Physicochemical Characteristics and Levels of Some Heavy Metals in Soils around Metal Scrap Dumps in Some Parts of Delta State, Nigeria, J. Appl. Sci. Environ. Manage., 14(4), 57–60 (2010)
  35. Zakir H.M., Shhikazono N. and Otomo K., Geochemical Distribution of Trace metals and Assessment of Anthropogenic Pollution in Sediments of Old Nakargawa River, Tokyo, Japan, Am. Journ. of Environ. Sc., 4(6),654-665 (2008)
  36. Biney C.A., Amuzu A.T., Calamari D., Kaba N., Mbome I.L., Naeve H., Ochumba P.B.O., Osibanjo O. Radegonde V. and Saad M.A.H., Review of heavy metals in the African aquatic environment, Ecotox. and Environ. Sfety, 28(2), 134-159 (1994)
  37. Popoola O.E, Bamgbose O, Okonkwo Arowolo O.J., Odukoya T.A and Popoola A.O.,Heavy Metals Content in Playground Topsoil of Some Public Primary Schools in Metropolitan Lagos, Nigeria, Res. Journ. of Environtl. and Eth Sc.,4(4), 434-439 (2012)
  38. Jerome Nriagu, Ngozi T. Oleru, Charles Cudjoe Ada Chine., Lead poisoning of children in Africa, III. Kaduna, Nigeria, The Sc. of the Totl. Environ., 197, 13-19 (1997)
  39. Adekunle M., Ndahi N.P. and Owolabi D.A., Levels of some Hazardous Trace Metals and Simulated Blood lead levels from Highway soils of South-Western Nigeria, Inter. Journ. of Environ. Iss., 11 (2003)
  40. Ezejiofor T.I.N., Ezejiofor A.N., Udebuani A.C., Ezeji E.U., Ayalogbu E.A., Azuwuike C.O., Adjero L.A., Ihejirika C.E., Ujowundu C.O., Nwaogu L.A. and Ngwogu K.O., Environmental metals pollutants load of a densely populated and heavily industrialized commercial city of Aba, Nigeria, Journ. of Toxicol. and Environ. Hlth Sc., 5(1), 1-11 (2013)