PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF SPING WATERS

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CHAPTER THREE METHODOLOGY AND STUDY AREA

Contrary to popular convention, this chapter commences (section 3.1) with an overview of the methodology used. The study area is discussed thereafter (sections 3.2 and 3.3), since some of the techniques described in 3.1 were required to elucidate the characteristics of the study area.

 METHODOLOGY
 Introduction

The aim of the research is to determine the optimum use for the Sagole thermal spring. It therefore focuses on the investigation of the possible diverse uses of thermal springs and strategies to identify the most appropriate use for Sagole with regard to economic, social and environmental aspects. The research methods used in the present study included the literature study, site visits and observation, personal communication, laboratory experiments, focus group interviews and an education and skills survey. The section below explains how the data was collected using these research methods in order to address the following objectives:

Literature review

An extensive literature survey was conducted in order to address the objectives mentioned above. The survey included articles from journals, secondary data, and websites. Articles by Bond (1946) and Olivier, van Niekerk and van der Walt (2008) provided information on the chemical properties of the Sagole hot spring and the map showing the locations of the thermal springs in the Limpopo Province, South Africa, adapted from Kent (1949) and Boekstein (1998). The Google Scholar search engine was used to access online articles on the topic, while the Geo-Heat Center website provided valuable information on the diverse uses of geothermal resources.

Site visits and observation

In order to collect realistic data on the uses and physical requirements for each use, national and international geothermal resource sites, resorts and projects were visited. These included the Sagole Spa itself (the subject of the case study), Siloam hot spring, Mphephu resort, Forever Resorts Tshipise, Forever Resorts Bela-Bela (Warmbaths) in Limpopo Province, and Huka Prawn Park and Wairakei Geothermal Power Station (Taupo in New Zealand) and Liskey Farms for aquaculture (fish farming and spirulina production) and greenhouses near Merrill in the Lower Klamath Valley in South Oregon, Oregon Institute of Technology, and Klamath Falls for geothermal power systems (USA) and Canby for aquaculture and geothermal power systems (Northern California, USA).
The physical and chemical characteristics of Sagole hot spring were obtained by measuring the temperature of the water at the source of the spring using a quality glass mercury thermometer. Water samples were also collected at source and stored at low temperatures (around 4oC) in 1 litre sample bottles before being submitted to the Council for Geosciences laboratory for chemical analysis.

Personal communication

Personal communications with managers and administrators of hot spring resorts, developers, project managers, local municipal managers and communication officers, tourist attraction officers and employees, and traditional leaders were conducted. Table 3.5 below lists the name of the person interviewed, the name of the place visited and contact information.3.1.5 Sample collection and analysis.
Research trips were undertaken (2005-2010) to the Sagole thermal spring where the temperature was measured at the source. Water samples were also collected at source and stored at low temperatures (around 4°C) in 1 litre sample bottles before they were submitted to the Council for Geosciences (CGS) laboratory for chemical analysis in Pretoria. The following chemical elements were measured by the CGS: bromine, selenium, strontium, molybdenum, cadmium, antimony, tellurium, iodine, barium, lanthanum, tungsten, platinum, lithium, beryllium, boron, titanium, vanadium, chromium, manganese, cobalt, nickel, copper, zinc and arsenic. Thereafter, the characteristics of thermal water at Sagole were compared with the criteria needed for each of the uses. A preliminary identification of the possible uses for Sagole was thus obtained. Thereafter, more detailed comparisons were conducted to identify the potential for specific uses. The comparison includes drinking water standards by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the European Union (EU) and South Africa.
For the purposes of triangulation, the measurements were compared with the chemical analysis by Bond (1946).

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Focus Group interviews

Focus group interviews were conducted at Tshipise Village with various structures or groups. A focus group pilot study was conducted with women from the local tribal council (Zwigodini village). After the pilot study, questions and questioning strategy were modified. The groups interviewed included the educators of the Madifha Primary School and the Hanyani Secondary School, farmers, tribal authorities, water committees, women, clinics, the South Africa National Civic Organisation (SANCO) and the Mutale Local Municipality Executive Committee. A digital recorder was used to record the focus group discussions. The interview process included a presentation of potential uses at Sagole. Participants were requested to express their views and indicate their alternative/s choice for development project in the area. They were also requested to prioritise the projects presented. Appendix 1 gives the questionnaire for the Focus Group Interview.

 Projects rating and education and skills surveys

Survey was conducted at Sagole with the following two objectives. The first objective was to rate the potential projects for development. The second objective was to identify the available knowledge and skills within the local community. Out of four hundred households, two hundred people were selected at random to participate in the survey. Four young people (two males and two females) from the local community assisted in data collection as research assistants. All of them had a minimum Grade 12 level of education and were identified by the local civic organisation committee. They were trained in data collection skills by the researcher. The survey tools are given as Appendix 10 and Appendix 11. Education and skills survey results are illustrated in Section 3.

 Calculation of feasibility of potential projects

Three potential projects were identified for development at Sagole. Potential impacts of each of the uses identified in chapter 4, were scored according to the given scale (-4 to +4), where -4 indicated high negative impact and +4 indicated high positive impact. The total weighted score and the mean score of each of the environmental, social and economic feasibility were calculated as follows:
Total weighted score = The mean score Where = Environmental, social and economic impact scores Where = Number of weighted scores
N= Number of occurrences
How the Feasibility Index was determined
To quantify the estimated costs and benefits of the project, the feasibility index was calculated in which the mean feasibility rating was multiplied by a factor reflecting the inverse of the potential costs of the development. This gives an indication of the costs and benefits oftheprojects.

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Fig 3.1 Location of thermal springs in Limpopo Province, South Africa (Olivier, van Niekerk and van der Walt, 2008:166)

Fig. 3.1 indicates that Sagole Spa is located in the north-eastern part of Limpopo Province. Sagole Spa (previously known as Klein Tshipise) is in the Tshikundamalela Tribal Authority area of the Vhembe district of the Limpopo Province. It falls under the authority of the Mutale Municipal Council. Figure 3.2 presents the location of Sagole Spa within the Mutale municipality.

Figure 3.2 Sagole Spa: Location

The Mutale Local Municipality borders Musina Local Municipality and Zimbabwe in the north, the Kruger National Park and Mozambique in the east, Makhado Local Municipality in the West and Thulamela Local Municipality in the South. The thermal spring is found at about 53km north-east of Thohoyandou. Other nearby towns are Musina in the north-west, and Tshilamba in the south-west (about 50 km from Sagole), the commercial centre of the municipality. The absolute location according to the grid reference is the 22°, 31’ 30’’ South and the 30°, 40’ 40’’ East (Winfield, 1980).

Figure 3.3 Sagole Spa: Geology

The section below provides a brief overview of the geology and morphology of the study area.

Figure 3.3 gives the geology of Sagole Spa and the surrounding areas.

The geology consists mainly of igneous rock. The following types are dominant: norite, a granular igneous rock consisting of a mix of light and dark minerals (http://dictionary.reference.com/brouse/norite), basalt, a dark dense igneous rock of lava flow or minor intrusions (http://dictionary.reference.com/brouse/basalt) and shale, a fine grained sedimentary rock consisting of compacted and hardened clay, silt or mud.

CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION
1.1 BACKGROUND
1.2 RATIONALE AND MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY
1.3 RESEARCH GOAL/AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
1.4 OUTLINE OF THE STUDY
CHAPTER TWO THERMAL SPRINGS AND THEIR POTENTIAL USES
2.1 INTRODUCTION
2.2 ORIGIN OF THERMAL SPRINGS
2.3 USES OF THERMAL SPRINGS
2.4 SUMMARY
CHAPTER THREE METHODOLOGY AND STUDY AREA
3.1 METHODOLOGY
3.2 STUDY AREA 71
3.3 CHARACTERISTICS OF SAGOLE SPA
3.4 SUMMARY 101
CHAPTER FOUR IDENTIFICTION OF POTENTIAL USES OF THERMAL SPRING WATER
AT SAGOLE
4.1 PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF SPING WATERS
4.2 POTENTIAL USES AND THEIR REQUIREMENTS
4.3 IDENTIFICATION OF POTENTIAL DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS FOR SAGOLE
4.4 SUMMARY 120
CHAPTER FIVE TOURISM
5.1 INTRODUCTION
5.2 TOURISM: AN OVERVIEW
5.3 SELECTION OF THE TYPE OF TOURISM SUITABLE FOR SAGOLE
5.4 SUITABILITY OF HEALTH SPA TOURISM AT SAGOLE
5.5 DEVELOPMENT PLAN FOR HEALTH SPA TOURISM AT SAGOLE
5.6 POTENTIAL IMPACTS OF HEALTH SPA TOURISM AT SAGOLE
5.7 FEASIBILITY
GET THE COMPLETE PROJECT
STRATEGY FOR THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF THERMAL SPRINGS: A CASE STUDY FOR SAGOLE IN LIMPOPO PROVINCE

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