Soil and environmental protection and sustainability are important aspects of natural resource management that have been neglected for too long. The objective of this study was to determine the damages caused by oil spill to the soil and environment. Soils samples were collected from the surroundings of five petroleum marketing companies – Mobil, Total, Conoil, NNPC and Oando petrol stations in Calabar, Cross River State. The samples were collected from the oil spill affected soils and non-oil affected soils to serve as control. Composite soil samples were collected from the top soil surface (0-15cm) using soil auger. Some physico-chemical properties that reflect soil nutrients content and fertility status (Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+, K+, C, N, P, pH, ECEC, particle size, electrical conductivity, and
hydrocarbon content) and microbial flora populations were determined using standard physico-chemical and biological methods. Results from the oil spill affected and non-oil spill affected soils were compared. There was a significant decrease in Ca2+, Mg2+, K+ , ECEC, silt fraction, clay fraction in oil affected soils as well as significant increase in the sand fraction content, Na+ content, electrical conductivity, hydrocarbon content of the oil-spill affected soils when compared with the non-oil spill affected soils. The acidic nature of the soils could not be attributed entirely to the oil-spilled since the control sample soils were equally acidic. The results of microbial flora in areas with and without oil spill shows little effect on the microbial populations of the soils studied. The average microbial population of the soils with oil-spill was 2.78 x 106 cfu/g, while that without oil-spill was 3.6 x 106 cfu/g. for bacteria count. The fungi populations of oil affected soils was 3.4 x 104 cfu/g while the non-oil affected soils was 3.0 x 104 cfu/g. The bacteria and fungi microbes identified from oil affected soils were Ganobacterium, Micrococcus luteus, Pseudomonas maltophilia and Aspergilus flavin, Rhizopus spp, Mucor spp, Candida spp while that of nonoil affected soils were Nocardia, Bacillus substillis, Pseudomonas putidae and Candida spp, Mucor spp and Aspergillus spp. The significant variation of the results of physico-chemical and microbiological population observed were indicative of the effect of oil spillage on the soils. The effects of oil spillage on the environment around the petrol stations were also observed by the scanty and burnt nature of thevegetation due to contact with petroleum product.
Keywords: Oil spillage, Soil properties, Petroleum marketing outlets, Environment, Non-spillage affected
THE EFFECTS OF OIL SPILLAGE ON THE PROPERTIES OF SOIL AND ENVIRONMENT AROUND THE MARKETING OUTLETS OF SOME PETROLEUM MARKETING COMPANIES IN CALABAR, CROSS RIVER STATE, NIGERIA