Swift Journal of Research in Environmental Studies (SJRES)
September 2015 Vol. 1(2), pp. 008-013

Copyright 2015 Swift Journals


Original Research Paper

Impact of Soil Excavation and Fuel Wood-Based Brick Burning on Soil Organic Matter and Soil Acidity at Burnt Brick Sites in Benue State, Nigeria

Agera, S.I.N, Ayuba S.A. and Agbidye, F.S.

Department of Forest Production and Products, University of Agriculture, Makurdi, P.M.B. 2373, Makurdi, Benue State, Nigeria. Department of Soil Science, University of Agriculture, Makurdi, P.M.B. 2373, Makurdi, Benue State, Nigeria

*Corresponding Author E-mail: stephenagera@gmail.com

Accepted 17 August, 2015


Abstract

There is a dearth of baseline data on the physical, chemical and biological impact of burnt brick production processes on soil properties in fuel wood-based burnt brick-producing areas of Benue State, Nigeria. Eight (8) out of 23 Local Government Areas (LGAs) were purposively sampled to assess the impact of soil excavation and brick firing on soil pH and soil organic matter content (SOM). A total of 96 composite soil samples was randomly taken from 32 soil pits at pre-determined depth ranges of 10-15cm, 60-65cm and 90-95cm. Also, another batch of 48 composite soil samples was taken at 0-5cm depth from both 32points of brick firing and 16 unburnt areas (control) at 16 brick sites evenly distributed in the study area. The sum of 144 soil samples was analysed using guidelines outlined by the Soil and Plant Analysis Council (SPAC). Data was analysed using descriptive statistics (percentages, Student T-test and analysis of variance). Results indicated that increased depth of soil excavation from 10-15 cm depth range to 60-65cm and 90-95cm depths range significantly decreased SOM. Conversely soil pH increased with a corresponding increase in depth of soil excavation within the depth ranges of 10-15cm, 60-65cm and 90-95cm. In all sampled LGAs, burning significantly increased soil pH, while SOM significantly declined at points of brick firing. Afforestation of brick sites with fast-growing tree species capable of tolerating more acidic soils low in SOM can eventually reverse increased acidity and low SOM (through litter fall) when the canopy of the trees is re-established.

Keywords: impact, soil excavation, brick burning, soil pH/organic matter and Benue State.

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How To Cite This Article:

Agera, S.I.N, Ayuba S.A. and Agbidye, F.S. Impact of Soil Excavation and Fuel Wood-Based Brick Burning on Soil Organic Matter and Soil Acidity at Burnt Brick Sites in Benue State, Nigeria Swift Journal of Research in Environmental Studies 1(2), pp. 008-013.