Oyibo Ntongha and Obire Omokaro*
Department of Microbiology, Rivers State University, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
*Corresponding Author: Obire Omokaro, Department of Microbiology, Rivers State University, Port Harcourt, Nigeria.
Received: April 14, 2022; Published: May 24, 2022
Oilfield wastewater contains organic and inorganic constituents which affect the aquatic environment and are hazardous to aquatic microorganisms. The impact of oilfield wastewater from Cawthorne channel rig in the Niger Delta on Cawthorne channel was investigated bi-weekly for four (4) months (January to April, 2008). A total of sixty-four (64) water samples collected from the drilling point, upstream, downstream and from a control point were analyzed for counts of bacteria and fungi using standard microbiological methods. Total heterotrophic bacteria (THB) counts ranged from 1.7×104cfu/ml to 4.8×104cfu/ml, the total fungal (TF) count ranged from 1.0×101cfu/ml to 1.9×102cfu/ml, while the total hydrocarbon utilizing bacterial (THUB) count ranged from 2.0×103cfu/ml to 9.0 ×103cfu/ml and the total hydrocarbon utilizing fungal (THUF) count ranged from 1.0×101cfu/ml to 1.0×102cfu/ml. Statistical analysis showed that there was no significant difference in the THB between the control and the other sampling stations; calculated F value (0.884065) ˂ F-critical value (10.12796). The decreasing order of both total heterotrophic bacteria and fungi counts in the stations for the months of January, February and April was; Control > Downstream > Upstream > Drilling point while decreasing order of Hydrocarbon Utilizing bacteria and Hydrocarbon Utilizing Fungi was Drilling point > Upstream > Downstream > Control. Generally, the highest count for both total heterotrophic bacteria and fungi were recorded in the Control while the lowest were observed in the Drilling point. On the other hand, the highest count for both Hydrocarbon Utilizing bacteria and Hydrocarbon Utilizing Fungi were recorded in the Drilling point while the lowest counts were recorded in the Control. The types of bacteria isolated in the study included Pseudomonas, Bacillus, Kurthia, Alcaligenes, Staphylococcus, Pediococcus, Micrococcus and Escherichia. Although statistical analysis showed that there was no significant difference in the THB between the control and the sampling stations, lowest counts in the Drilling point showed that the oilfield wastewater does have effect on the microbial population and diversity. The high bacteria counts in the study revealed the impact of oilfield wastewater on aquatic microbes and diversity. The high prevalence of hydrocarbon utilizing bacteria and fungi revealed that the water body studied contained active indigenous hydrocarbon utilizers which can be harnessed for bioremediation process.
Keywords: Cawthorne Channel; Swamp; Oilfield Wastewater; Hydrocarbon Utilizing Bacteria
Citation: Oyibo Ntongha and Obire Omokaro. “Impact of Oilfield Wastewater on Microbial Population of Cawthorne Channel in Rivers State, Nigeria". Acta Scientific Microbiology 5.6 (2022): 52-58.
Copyright: © 2022 Oyibo Ntongha and Obire Omokaro. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.