Some postgraduate students of Department of Geography, Nasarawa State University, Keffi have advocated the construction of more liquid waste treatment plants across the country to enhance environmental sustainability.
The students made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) at Wupa Treatment Plant on Saturday, March 3, 2018 in Abuja.
NAN reports that their visit to the plant rounded-up a three-day field trip to the FCT.
They also called on the Federal Government to fund the maintenance of water treatment plants, liquid waste treatment plants and solid waste dump sites in the country.
The students on the first day of the field trip visited Usman Dam, Bwari, the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) on the second day and Wupa Treatment Plant and Gossa Waste Dump Site on the third day.
Mr Adamu Maina, a student doing his Masters in Environmental Resources Management in the department, urged the Federal Government to build more water treatment and liquid waste treatment plants in the FCT and the country.
According to him, it is very important to have such facilities because of population growth.
He, however, said he would like do a research on how ecofriendly water mix with natural water converging in Lower Usman Dam would be properly treated and send to end users.
The student said it was very important to understand the processes of the treatment of water and liquid waste to enhance their sustainability.
“In environment, we don’t look at those things as challenge, we look at reducing the impact of environmental challenges, reducing that impact to a certain level that is acceptable.
“ If we look at the liquid waste coming from phase I, II and III of Abuja to Wupa, it goes mechanical, biological and at the end, it passes through the “DNA’’ of water .
“The process would have reduced the hazard of the liquid waste water before discharging it to the environment,’’ he said.
Similarly, Ms Patience Uche, a Post Graduate Diploma student of Environmental Resources Management in the department, appealed to the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) and the Federal Government to budget enough money to maintain the facilities.
Uche said that she noticed that some of the equipment at Lower Usman Dam and Wupa Treatment Plants were not maintained very well due to lack of funding, according to the officials.
Also speaking, Mr Ayeni Folusho, the Head of Quality Control Laboratory at Wupa Treatment Plant said they treat an average of 1,000 cubic meter per hour for quality, while the quantity was about 98 per cent efficient.
“The water we are treating here is a liquid waste (domestic waste water) from Abuja, we discharge it to the environment (Wupa River) after treatment because that is the concept of waste water treatment.
“Waste water must not be discharged directly to the environment, it will cause epidemic.
“The water we are discharging from the plant is ecofriendly, you can as well do certain things with the water, maybe installing hydro power plant to generate electricity,’’ he said.
Folusho, however, appealed to the authority to find solution to the erratic power supply in the plant, saying “we need dedicated line to the plant.’’
“We have been using generator for the past 11 years to function optimally in the station.’’
In his remarks, Prof. Nasiru Idris, the Head, Department of Geography in the university, said that the department had not missed a year without visiting World Class Facility since 2012.
“Wupa is the final resting place for liquid waste in Abuja, and the process is purely mechanical and it is still not operating at full capacity.
“We are here today with our Postgraduate students (PGD, MSC and PhD) and our primary aim of visiting your facility today is to compliment theories with practice.
“However, you may wish also to note that the field trip is an integral part of the Post Graduate programme (PG) and many of the PG courses have component of the practical aspect of fieldwork and its a core in geography,’’ he said.
Idris said that the students would be carrying out their own fieldwork in groups, which would enable them suggest measures to the president environmental problems.
NAN reports that the theme of the three days field trip is “Environmental Sustainability in the FCT and its Environs”.
By Cecilia Ologunagba