1Chinwe S. Anukwu, 2Rogers I. Wilcox
Department of Geography and Natural Resource management
University of Uyo, Nigeria
3Anthony P. Akadi
Eket, Akwa Ibom State
This study investigated the impact of wetland-based livelihood on environmental quality in Akwa Ibom state. This was done by identifying wetland-based activities in the region, investigating the level of dependence on the wetlands and mitigation methods carried out in the region. Freshwater and saltwater wetlands are found in Akwa Ibom State. Two local government areas were purposely selected for the study used to represent freshwater (Uruan L.G.A) and Saltwater (Oron L.G.A) wetlands. The use of systematic random sampling technique was employed for data collection. Data was collected on socio-economic status, livelihood practices, perception on environmental quality and mitigation methods practiced. Data was analysed using Principal components analysis to reduce wetland-based livelihood into six major components (agricultural, non-timber, hunting, timber/labour services, palm wine and sand mining components). Multiple logistic regression analysis was used in predicting the dependency of residents based on their socio-economic status. The dependency of the respondents was highly based on the level of education, distance to the wetland and income level. The respondents were of the general opinion that the condition of the environment had degraded in the last five years. Using a three-point Likert scale, the result indicated that the respondents were not well informed of some recent practices employed to ensure sustainability and protect the environment. It was recommended that workshops and seminars be organised at community levels by both government and environmental stakeholders in order to inculcate good environmental practices that would promote wetland sustainability.
Key Words: Wetland, Livelihood, Environmental Quality, Akwa Ibom State