The Deteriorating State of Nigerian Soil


Experts are continually expressing concern over the increasing rate of soil pollution in Nigeria describing the situation as threatening food security in Nigeria.

President of Soil Science Society of Nigeria (SSSON), Professor Bashiru Raji gave this warning in a statement in Abuja on the 5th of December, 2018 as part of activities to mark the World Soil Day, which is being celebrated to highlight the important role of soil to the survival of humans.

According to the statement, soil pollution is a hidden danger underneath our feet it is not only real but poses a greater threat to food security, human health, and the environment.

The soil scientists opined that some of the most visible incidences of soil pollution in Nigeria are the inflexible pollution from the oil and gas flare in the Niger Delta region. Also, the case of Lead poisoning arising from the artisanal gold mining in Zamfara State in 2010 where over 700 children were reported dead.

Additionally, the soil science specialists stressed that there were several undocumented and under-reported cases from the untreated effluents from the potential 3,000 industrial locations in Nigeria and biomedical waste disposal from the over 23,640 private and public hospitals and clinics posing great danger from their radioactive, infectious and cancerous contaminations of the soils and water resources and their derivatives.

Some of the identified possible causes of soil pollution include; agricultural activities, artisanal mining activities, inappropriate domestic waste disposal and continual use of plastic and Nylon by members of the public.

In its April 2018 report, United Nation Environmental Programme (UNEP) revealed that Nigeria has the highest burden of air pollution in Africa and the 4th globally. The menace has being killing over one hundred and fifty (150) persons out of every sampled population of one hundred thousand (100,000) Nigerians.