International Journal of Environmental Sciences

Volume 5 Issue 4 2015- January 2015    Pages: 830- 839  <<Previous    Next>>

Potential impacts of urban development around the Apẹsẹ Lagoon in the Lagos Metropolis of Nigeria

Author Information:

Nkwunonwo, Ugonna C.1 2 and Bamanga, Awwal2
1- Department of Geoinformatics and Surveying, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, Enugu, Nigeria.
2- School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Portsmouth, United Kingdom.


A general concern for ongoing urban developments such as built-up areas, road networks and commercial activities in the neighbourhood of Apẹsẹ lagoon in the Lagos metropolis of Nigeria is expressed in this paper. Urbanization in many places seems to constitute a potential source of threat to the aquatic environment, particularly the lagoons. Arguably, the sustainable existence of lagoons globally is endangered by land reclamation and some industrial activities which results in dumping of poisonous wastes and chemical substances into the lagoons. Naturally, by exchange of nutrients with its living organisms, lagoons serve as platforms for establishing harbours, which generally function as hubs for trade and transportation. Due to such important function, most lagoons can be described as marine protected areas (MPAs) when their physico-chemical parameters such as pH values, salinity and temperature meet some international standards, and should be preserved from external environmental influences. Apẹsẹ lagoon is a MPA, following previous investigations carried out in the area. Unfortunately, urbanization in the surrounding areas of the lagoon is assuming a critical dimension and much uncertainty surrounds the future of the MPA. In the present study, several samples of water taken from the lagoon for both the dry and wet seasons were measured, analysed and discussed. The results show that at the moment, despite being alkaline (a pH value which is >7.5), the MPA is stable based on the values obtained for its physico-chemical parameters, which compare well with international environmental standards. However, given the observed rate of urban growth in the area, it is possible the MPA will be affected in the future. The study suggests possible ways of arresting the situation and ultimately recommends comprehensive environmental impacts assessment (EIA) towards future urban development around the Apẹsẹ lagoon area.

Keywords: Apẹsẹ lagoon, Impact assessment, Harbour, Urban development, Marine Protected Area (MPA), Environmental threats, Human activities.


© 2015 Copyright by the authors, licensee Integrated Publishing Association.This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (3.0) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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