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QUALITATIVE AND QUANTITATIVE EXTRACTION OF CRUDE OIL IN ANAKPA COMMUNITY AND ITS IMPACT
The study of crude oil extraction in Anakpa crude oil bearing communities was undertaken to investigate qualitatively and quantitatively the impact of crude oil exploration and exploitation in the area. Anakpa is one of the crude oil-bearing communities in Uruan Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria. Due to the discovery of crude oil in Anakpa in 1956 exploration and exploitation of crude oil was undertaken onshore by Shell Petroleum Development company (SPDC). Anakpa crude oil wells Edik 1, Edik2, Ituk1, Ituk 2, AP 1 and AP 11 are under Oil Prospecting Licence ( OPL) 231 (EIA,2014). OPL 231 is operated by Monipulo Petroleum Company Limited. Oil Prospecting Licence (OPL) 231 shared common boundary with Oil Mineral Licence (OML) I3 and 14 operated by Mobil Producing Nigeria and Frontier Exploration Company respectively. Oil Prospecting Licence (OPL) 231 covered crude oil wells located in Uruan in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria as well as other wells located in Ikoneto in Cross River, Nigeria (EIA,2014). Under this concession Akwa Ibom State, have 98 % of total share while Cross River State had only 2 % of the total production capacity. Under Oil Prospecting L 231 concession Monipulo in 2013 conducted crude oil wells reappraisal of Edik 1, Edik 2, Ituk 1 and Ituk 2 (EIA,2014). New crude oil wells discovered as results of seismic evaluation conducted by Monipulo were API 1 and API 11 by Monipulo Petroleum Company (EIA, 2014).
The extract from crude petroleum include other petroleum products such as: liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), premium motor sprit (PMS), dual purpose kerosene (DPK), automotive gas oil (AGO), high power fuel oil (HLPF) and aviation turbine kerosene (ATK). These products are very important natural resources, even though they are non-renewable (Abidemi, 2013).
Adewiuyi and Oluwa (2013) further stated that there are environmental consequences associated with crude oil extraction which were often underestimated. Okoro et al. (2011) noted that in crude oil production, exploration is the first phase of the search for hydrocarbon-bearing rock formations where geological maps are reviewed in desk studies to identify major sedimentary basins. As mentioned by Okoro et al. (2011) aerial photography may then be used to identify promising landscape formations such as faults or anticlines. Ahaneku and Sadiq (2014) stated that more detailed information is assembled using a field geological assessment, followed by one of these three main survey methods: Magnetic, gravimetric and seismic.Udoudoh (2011) also statedthat themagnetic methoddepends upon measuring the variations in intensity of the magnetic field which reflects the magnetic character of the various rocks present, while the gravimetric methodinvolves the measurements of small variations in the gravitational field at the surface of the earth.Akubugwu et al. (2011) further stated thatmeasurements are made, on land and at sea, using either an aircraft or a survey ship respectively. According to Adekoya (1995) a seismic surveyis the most common assessment method and is often the first field activity undertaken.
Adewiuyi and Oluwa (2013) further revealed that the seismic method is used for identifying geological structures and relies on the differing reflective properties of sound waves to various rock strata, beneath terrestrial or oceanic surfaces.As reported by Ackike et al. (2010) at each point where different geological strata exist, a part of the energy is transmitted down to deeper layers within the earth, while the remainder is reflected to the surface. Here, it is picked up by a series of sensitive receivers called geophones or seismometers on land, or hydrophones submerged in water(Akpan, 2005). Special cables transmit the electrical signals received to a mobile laboratory, where they are amplified andfiltered and then digitized and recorded on magnetic tapes for interpretation (Akpan, 2005). The use of dynamite has since been discontinued in view of negative environmental consequences associated with the use of dynamite in an environment (Akpan, 2005).
According to Ahmad et al. (2010) in view of recovery of crude hydrocarbon, exploration survey is then conducted to confirm the presence of hydrocarbon in a geological formation. The depth of the well drilled depends on the location of the crude hydrocarbon. According to Ahmad et al. (2010) after drilling well testswere then conducted to ensure and establish flow rates and formation pressure. These tests may generate oil, gas and formation water produced. Accordinly waste oil and formation water may be disposed directly into the environment (Ahmad et al.2010). After successful drilling the well casing is restored and re-enforcement done to prevent upward migration of hydrocarbon (Chinenyeze and Ekene, 2015). This if notproperly carried out in many cases a bore and leaking which invariably led to the upward migration of crude hydrocarbon from the well casing head into the environment would occur. Therefore, proper well casing appraisal must be undertaken to prevent such upward migration of the hydrocarbon through the wellhead onto the soil and water. The pressure however may decrease depending on the age and nature of the crude oil well. In this case supply of external energy into the reservoir in the form of injecting fluids is applied to increase reservoir pressure. The application of this technique entails the replacing or increasing the natural reservoir drive with an artificial drive which can further create negative environmental consequences if it is not properly monitored (Chinenyeze and Ekene, 2015).
Dutta et al. (2007) mentioned that one fundamental problem that faced the oil producing areas today is the degradation of its environment. The environment of the Niger Delta has been intensely polluted with tragic consequences for the economy of the people and the totality of the quality of life (Dutta et al.,2007).Babatunde (2010) reported that a significant feature of the socio-economic life of the Niger Delta people is environmental degradation and is largely the outcome of pollution and unsustainable exploitation of natural resources.The unsustainable exploitation of the environment in the Niger Delta is blamed on the inability or failure of the environmental laws to correctly acts in attitudes and beliefs, which impacted negatively on the environment(Dickson and Udoessien, 2012).
Onojake et al. (2011) also mentioned that crude oil exploration and production should employ effective and sustainable maintenance of the production facilities to prevent environmental pollution. According to Chinenyeze and Ekene (2015) to ensure equity in crude oil exploration flow station and production facilities exploration and processing activities in crude oil field should be effectively monitored. This according to Al-Farraji et al. (2010) is very critical in the entire life cycle of the crude oil production and processing as this facilitates sound and safe operational processes. The entire life cycle operations of crude oil production and processing should prevent the destruction of environment and disruption of the entire ecosystem balance. Such would prevent and further reduce the extent in which organic and inorganic substances are being introduced into the environment (Ekanem et al, 2011). Chikwendu (1998) when such pollutants are not checked, the gradual and subsequent accumulation of such substances into the environment could lead to acute and chronic toxicity over time.
As mentioned by Alike (2010), crude oil exploration in the Niger Delta coastal environment over the years also have contributed to the introduction of invasive plants species in the area. Chikwendu (1998) reported that the invasive plant species affect the soil fertility and crop yields due to the negative impact exhibited by such plants on agricultural crops cultivated. Onojake and Osuji (2011) also noted that the availability of the invasive plants had also blocked water ways leading to severe ecological damages in the coastal communities. Onojake and Osuji (2011) reported that the intensive rising in demand of exploration activities coupled with the increasing tendency to resume the commercial operational activities on the marginal crude oil well in the Niger Delta region has gradually affected the entire developmental activities in the wetland area of the region.
Eweje (2006) stated that the resumption of production activities through a concessional arrangement with other multinational organizations have further compounded environmental situations in crude oil-bearing communities of Niger Delta. This according to Eweje (2006), has affected the traditional agricultural system due to declamation of the community farmland to crude oil production activities.Dickson and Udoessien (2012) noted that in most cases depending on the location of such wells and the amount of crude oil, the crop yield from the farmland might also be affected due to constant gas flaring within such areas.
Proshad et al. (2017) mentioned that apart from constant gas flaring experienced within these sites, there is also pressure built up around the well head leading to accidentalcrude oil spillages over time. According to Yakubu et al. (2011) the spillages that occur due to upward pressure from the wellhead were not properly remediated. In this case the magnitude of environmental spillages recorded becomes very highthereby leading to severe environmental consequences on soil. Consequently, there is gradual decline in soil microbial activities and soil nutrients required for plant growth and development. This resulted in gradual decline in agricultural output (Ekanem et al.2011).
Nduka et al. (2009) stated that there is need for sustainable exploration of these resources to ensure continuous protection of environmental resources both onshore and offshore locations within the Niger Delta Region. Sustainable development according to Nduka et al. (2009) enhances efficient extraction of these resources and prevented complete destruction of biodiversity. As also mentioned by Nduka et al. (2009) sustainable exploration of crude oil protects aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem. Apart from the associated environmental consequences as mentioned, Nigerian crude oil, just like other crude oil wells existed in pockets with each crude oil possessing a unique character(Dickson and Udoessien, 2012). Therefore, for the convenience of processing crude oils are often blended into a mix with a unique character in view of geological formation (Dickson and Udoessien, 2012).
Dickson and Udoessien (2012) stated that presently there are more than fifteen commercially available crude oil blends in Nigeria. These include: Bonny light, Bonny medium, Qua Iboe Light, Escravos light, Brass blend, Pennington light, Focados blends, Amenam blend, Yoho light, Erha blend, Bonga , Agbami light as well as Usan blend. Therefore, in an event of spillages there is the tendency of enormous organic and inorganic substances being introduced into the immediate environment (Johanna and Woodward, 1991). As mentioned by Nnorom and Ewezie (2015) these substances could enter the food chain and accumulate in plants and animals since they cannot be degraded into non-toxic pollutants in the body. Hence, this dissertation was undertaken to evaluate and determine the effect of crude oil pollution in Anakpa crude oil-bearing communities of Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria.
1.1 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The study was aimed at analytically determining the physico-chemical properties of Anakpa crude oil blends and relative effects on Anakpa community in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria. Soil, water and some plant samplesin the villages selected at random within Anakpa Uruan crude oil-bearing communitiesand the control station (Mbak-Etoi) were obtained to determine the effectof crude oil exploration in the study areas. The sample results were statistically analysed to ascertain the sources of contaminants associated with crude oil extraction and exploration in Anakpa crude oil-bearing areas and in the control site selected for this study.
The specific objectives of this study were to:
- conduct socio-economic analysis of the Anakpa crude oil-bearing community to ascertain the effect cause by crude oil extraction.
- determine the physicochemical properties of various crude oil blends in Anakpa in Uruan Local Government Areas and other location in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria.
- assess how the crude oil exploration activities have affected the soils used for agricultural activities in Anakpa crude oil bearing communities.
- determine the effect of crude oil exploration and extraction onsurface water bodies in Anakpa crude oil bearing communities in Uruan Local Government Area.
- assess the phytotoxicity effect of Crude oil exploration and extraction on plants species found within crude oil production site within the study location and
- assess the in-situ air quality within the crude oil-bearing communities of Anakpa Uruan and at the control site.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Ebong (2005) revealed that industrial revolution coupled with unsustainable exploration and development of crude oil well has drastically changed the quality of the environment. Ebong (2005) also stated that indiscriminate disposal of crude oil related effluent and treatment chemicals have contributed to environmental pollution. Eneje et al. (2012) revealed that exploration and exploitation of natural resources especially crude oil by multinational organizations has led to severe environmental degradation within the rural communities of the crude oil-bearing area. According to Njoku et al. (2016), other natural resources within rural areas have also been destroyed, leading to severe ecological problems that have affected agricultural activities within these areas. Soils used for agricultural activities has been affected due to chemical and crude oil spillages associated with exploration and exploitation activities. Njoku et al. (2016) mentioned that the concessional production activities being undertaken from some marginal wells in Niger Delta have brought positive and negative impacts to the crude oil-bearing areas within the Niger Delta. Due to the environmental consequences associated with crude oil production, theFederaland State Government authorities in Nigeria established regulatory agencies to regulate by law the activities of the oil companies operating in Nigeria. This was done to ensure that global best practiceswere implemented in the extraction and processing of crude oil in Nigeria. However, despite these laws and regulations, the rural communities within the crude oil-bearing communities are mostly affected in view of the locations of these crude oil wells.
Dickson and Udoessien (2012) reported that in most cases there were decayed infrastructural facilities around the well head where crude oil productions occur leading to accidental crude oil releases into the soil and water within the affected communities. Also, in view of other operational activities being undertaken by multinational companies during crude oil production and processing, other obnoxious substances such as trace metals capable of polluting the environment were always generated and released directly into the immediate environment. Sunmonu and Oloyede (2007) reported that such obnoxious substances which are rich in organic and inorganic substances have the potential of affecting the land, water, and air quality and crop yield (Bada and Olarinre, 2012)
The untreated effluent generated and disposed indiscriminately into the immediate environment is also contaminated with injurious chemical substances such as hydrogen sulphide, benzene and other organic matters such as polycyclic aromatics hydrocarbons. All these substances have potential of causing environmental pollution if they are not managed effectively.As a result of environmental pollution, there is drastic decline in the region’s biodiversity and ecological resources, which are the main sources of the people incomeand modeof survival (Bada and Olarinre, 2012).Although there are laws and regulations regarding crude oil production activities in Nigeria, in most times these laws are not effectively enforced leading to the introduction of obnoxious substances into the environment at a level higher than the allowable limits. Therefore, the activities of crude oil exploration in Anakpa was investigated so as to ascertain the effects of crude oil pollution in the area