Environmental pollution has gradually become our reality in the 21st century, most especially for people living in highly industrialized areas and the Niger-Delta region.
While a report of environmental pollution may be dismissed as a regular occurrence, recent events in Port Harcourt city, River state Nigeria calls for serious concern as pollution as taken another twist.
It was reported that residents of the city have been dealing with rising black soot particles in the atmosphere. This black soot usually leaves black spots and stains all over the place, even in the homes.
Nigeria’s ministry of environment has since risen to the occasion as air pollution emergency was declared in the area, most especially after it was discovered the black soot may cause respiratory diseases and cancer.
Preliminary test samples carried out by the ministry of environment showed the soot was caused by “incomplete combustion of hydrocarbons” as well as “asphalt processing and illegal artisanal refinery operations.”
The state government has since shut down an asphalt processing plant for what was described as ‘aggravated air pollution and breach of environmental laws’.
Residents took to Twitter to protest the soot with the hashtag #StopTheSoot.
The soot had reportedly stopped for a while but reappeared again in March.