Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-2015

DOI

10.1080/10962247.2015.1070773

Publication Title

Journal of the Air & Waste Management Association

Volume

65

Issue

9

Pages

1148-1152

Abstract

The practice of household bush burning in Grenada occurs frequently, though it is not well documented. The effects of the emissions from bush burning on respiratory health of the population have never been researched in Grenada. The goal of the study was to measure the frequency of bush burning and to investigate the relationship between bush burning practice and respiratory health in Grenada. In this cross-sectional study, a questionnaire was used to gather information from households in the parishes of St. George and St. Andrew, Grenada. In total, 225 participants were recruited and their responses on household bush burning and respiratory symptoms were analyzed. Self-reported data showed that the practice of bush burning was conducted by 43% (n = 96) of the participants as a regular practice (every month) and 86% (n = 192) of participants stated that their neighbors burn bush regularly. The most common lower respiratory symptom associated with bush burning was dry cough (31.4%). The participants who engage in the practice of bush burning had a statistically significant, higher prevalence of sinusitis symptoms (OR: 2.1, CI 95%: 1.1-3.9) and had slightly higher prevalence of cough (OR: 1.6, CI 95%: 0.9-2.8). Prevalences of physician-diagnosed asthma and sinusitis were 12.3% and 31.2%, respectively. Conducting studies on the health effects of bush burning in different settings and with different practices, such as the household bush burning in our current study, could help to improve public health in the developing world.Implications:Household disposal of waste is a significant issue in the developing world. In particular, residential bush burning is a common practice in tropical regions. This study demonstrates that the common practice of bush burning in the Caribbean is associated with respiratory symptoms and demonstrates the need for better management of residential yard waste. Burning of yard waste results in potentially significant exposures to air pollution and therefore alternative disposal practices need to be available. There is a need to increase awareness of the importance of avoiding exposure to the air pollutants generated during bush burning among communities in the Caribbean.

Comments

Web of Science: "Free full-text from publisher."

Copyright © 2015 A&WMA.

Original Publication Citation

Akpinar-Elci, M., Coomansingh, K., Blando, J., & Mark, L. (2015). Household bush burning practice and related respiratory symptoms in Grenada, the Caribbean. Journal of the Air & Waste Management Association, 65(9), 1148-1152. doi:10.1080/10962247.2015.1070773

ORCID

0000-0001-8094-261X (Akpinar-Elci), 0000-0001-5619-499X (Blando)

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