The effect of industrialization on the environment: a case study of leather industry of Kenya limited (LIK), Thika municipality, Thika District

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Kampala International University, School of engineering and applied science
A study on the effects of industrialization on the environment was carried out in the leather industry of Kenya limited, Makongeni industrial area, Thika municipality, Thika district. The main objectives considered include industrial activities carried out, the impacts of LIK on the environment and to the industry, current measures being undertaken to minimize the effects and the way forward through suggested recommendations to reduce the industrial effects on the environment and on the people. A general survey research design was used in carrying out the study. Data collection instruments used include, interviews questionnaires, direct observation, photography and library search. Results revealed that the major industrial activity of LIK is leather tanning for export. The source for hides and skins is form pastoral areas and slaughter houses which are bought when dried or wet-green. Raw hides and skins preservation method used in the tannery are salting, chilling and dying. The specific impacts of LIK industry originate from liquid, solid and gaseous emissions resulting from the tanning operations. The effects of the tannery on the environment were evident on soil, water air, presence of scavengers, littering of wastes when transporting them and public health concerns as result of air and water pollution from the tannery’s effluents. The public health concerns include cholera, malaria, respiratory problems, headaches, stomachaches, dizziness and skin disorders.The strategies formulated for minimizing the effects of the industry on the environment of Makongeni are meant to maintain healthy living conditions, good water availability and quality, fertile productive soils as well as vegetation by minimizing air and water pollution in the industry. Measure undertaken include safety in use and handling of chemicals at work, machine safety, personal protection and emergency preparedness, use of load lifting devices, reduction of chloride load, solid waste management, environmental education, processing green hides and waste water treatment before releasing in to the environment .The recommendations advanced include training, chromium recycling, waste water processing, proper solid disposal, capital intensive modifications, government intervention and human resource development, creating awareness and odour control in the tannery
A dissertation submitted to the faculty of social sciences, department of environment Kampala International University, in partial fulfillment for the award of a Bachelor of Environment Management
Industrialization effects, Environment, Leather industry, Thika District, Kenya