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The capability ofSansevierialiberica to withstand crude oil pollution, degrade and/or accumulate the contaminant was investigated using 0.3, 1.3 and 6.3% v/w concentrations of crude oil to pollute soil vegetated with the stem cuttings of the plant. These treatments were repeated in unvegetated soils and the control had no crude oil pollution. The experiment was carried out in 3 replicates in a completely randomized design. Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons (TPH) were determined for all soil samples (vegetated and unvegetated)as well as the leaves, stem and roots using Gas Liquid Chromatography (GLC). Vegetative parameters namely; number of leaves, leaf area, plant height and stem circumference were determined for both control and polluted plants before and after pollution. The results showed that percentage TPH degraded in the vegetated soil was 95.8, 88.5 and 68.1% for 0.3, 1.3 and 6.3% v/w concentrations, respectively. S liberica alone degraded 0.87, 2.92 and 2.29% for the same treatments. Percentage accumulations of 0.3% v/w crude oil pollution for the leaf, stem and root were 0.002, 0.036 and 0.209%, respectively, those of 1.3% v/w were 0.004, 0.067 and 0.315%, respectively while those of 6.3% v/w were 0.008, 0.085 and 0.43%, respectively. Means for the vegetative parameters for the plant parts showed that there were significant (P< 0.05) differences in some vegetative parameters after contamination with crude oil. Therefore there was phytoremediation and accumulation of hydrocarbons by S. liberica.


Title page
List of tables
List of figures
List of plates
Table of content

1.0       Introduction
1.1       Crude oil/or hydrocarbon pollution
1.2       Sansevierialiberica Gerome and Labroy
1.3       Scientific classification
1.4       Description of the plant
1.5       Cultivation of Sansevieriliberica
1.6       Uses
1.7       Aim and objectives of the research work

2.0       Literature Review
2.1       Remediation approaches and hydrocarbon degradation
2.2       Impact of hydrocarbon contamination on environment and human health
2.3       Phytoremediation as a tool for soil clean up
2.3.1    Phytodegradation (Rhizodegradation)
2.3.2    Phytostabilization
2.3.3    Phytoextraction (Phytoaccumulation)
2.3.4    Phytovolatilization
2.3.5    Rhizofiltration
2.4       Phytodegrading potential of plants
2.5       Phytoremediation of hydrocarbon contaminated soil

3.0       Materials and methods
3.1       Collection of materials
3.2       Methods/ experimental design
3.3       Determination of Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons (TPH) in the soil
3.4       Determination of TPH in leaves, stem and roots
3.5       Determination of TPH degraded and accumulated
3.6       Data Analysis

4.0       Results
4.1       Total Petroleum Hydrocarbon (TPH) degraded in the soil
4.2       Percentage accumulation of TPH in the plant organs (leaves, stem and roots)
4.3       Vegetative parameters of Sansevierialibericapolluted with crude oil

5.0       Discussion
5.1       Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons (TPH) degraded
5.2       TPH accumulation in the plant organs
5.3       Vegetative parameters
5.4       Conclusion


1.1  Crude oil/or hydrocarbon pollution
Crude oil is a crucial energy resource and vital industrial raw material. With increasing industrial production, oil pollution has become a serious worldwide environmental problem, especially at the oil mining stage in the field (Zhu et al., 2013). Large-scale crude oil spills on soil, leakages from pipelines, underground and surface fuel storage tanks, indiscriminate spills and careless disposal and mismanagement of wastes and other petroleum by-products constitute the major sources of petroleum contamination in our environment. Oil spillage on soil has many detrimental effects on the composition, structure and functioning of terrestrial ecosystems, including loss of biodiversity (Osuji et al., 2004). Soil contamination arising from oil spills is one of the most limiting factors to soil fertility. It affects growth of plants thereby causing negative impacts on food productivity (Onwurahet al., 2007).

High levels of petroleum hydrocarbons which include alkanes (paraffin), alkenes (olefins) and various aromatic hydrocarbons are found in crude oil (Oforkaet al., 2012). According to a report by NNPC (2004), the Nigerian crude oil is characterized by high concentrations of aromatics (40%) and polars (resins and asphaltenes, 47%). Oil pollutants can get transferred via food chains and eventually cause adverse effect on human health. In addition, residual oil hydrocarbons can persist in the soil for decades and have chronic effect on ecosystems and human beings (Culbertson et al., 2008).The latter has attracted increasing attention because of the carcinogenic, mutagenic and toxic effects (Imeh and Sunday, 2012).

Environmental remediation deals with the removal of pollutants or contaminants from environmental media such as soil, groundwater, sediments or surface water (Zhu et al., 2004). Phytoremediation (from Ancient Greek (phyto), meaning "plant", and Latin remedium, meaning "restoring balance") describes the treatment of environmental problems by using plants without the need to excavate the contaminant material and dispose of it elsewhere (Ruiet al., 2012).

Total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) is defined as the measurable amount of petroleum-based hydrocarbon in an environmental medium. It is thus, dependent on analysis of the medium in which it is found (Adesodun and Mbagwu, 2007). Some chemicals that may be found in TPH are hexane, jet fuels, mineral oils, benzene, toluene, xylenes, naphthalene and fluorine as well as other petroleum products and gasoline components. However, it is likely that samples of TPH will contain only some, or a mixture of these chemicals (USEPA, 2012).

Gas liquid chromatography (GLC) is one of the most powerful, popular, unique and versatile analytical techniques used for the separation, identification and quantitative assay of compounds in the vapour state. The popularity of GLC is absolutely centred on high selectivity, sensitivity, high resolution combined with good accuracy and precision in a wide dynamic concentration range (Sjaaket al., 2009).

1.2Sansevierialiberica Gerome and Labroy
The genus Sansevieria pronounced (san-se-vi-ee’-ri-ah) – is a member of theFamily Asparagaceae and is popularly called Snake-plant, Mother-in-Law’s tongue or Bowstring....

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