Crude Oil Spills and Its Consequences on Seafoods Safety in Coastal Area of Ibeno: Akwa Ibom State

Nikereuwem Stephen Ekpenyong, Udeme Sunday Udofia


Crude oil spill constitutes the most significant source of hydrocarbon in the Nigerian environment. Hence, a study on the impact of oil spill on sea foods of safety was conducted. The mean concentration of total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) in the tissues of various fish species sampled ranged from 5.73 mg/l in Chrysichthys nigrodigitatus to 21.27 mg/l in Ethmalosa finbriata. These values are well below the GESAMP recommended upper limit of 25mg/kg allowed for detection in seafood. The concentration of heavy metal, varied remarkably. Total Iron (Fe) ranged between 49.4 mg/kg in Selene dorsalis and 435 mg/kg in Alectis alexandrinus in the incident zone, and between 45.2 mg/kg in Pseudotholitus elongates and 344 mg/kg in Alectis alexandrinus in the control zone. Lead (Pb) ranged between 0.2 mg/kg in most species to 8.54 mg/kg in Mugil cephalus in both incident and control zones. The concentration of Fe and Zn was considerably higher than reference values of 11.20-12.6 mg/kg reported for fin-fishes in Egypt and 5.4 mg/kg reported for fin-fishes in Ghana. The mean concentration of mercury (0.002 mg/kg) in species from incident and control zones was the lowest of all the trace metals. Elevated levels of heavy metals such as mercury, lead etc and hydrocarbons (benzene, toluene, ethylene and xylene), have been implicated in carcinogenic and mutagenic conditions. 


Sea food; Crude oil; Oil spill; Coastal area; Environment; Hydrocarbon

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