Mountains in the Chaning World, Mountains in the Chaning World

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Assessment of Indoor Air Pollution and Associated Health Impacts in Households Equipped with and Without Biogas
Shristi Shrestha

Last modified: 2017-09-13


Household’s dependency on biomass fuels for cooking and space heating purpose is often associated with poor ventilated kitchen. Incomplete combustion of biomass fuel creates dangerous cocktail of indoor air pollutants like particulate matters, carbon monoxide and other health damaging pollutants. The study was focused to find the concentration of major indoor air pollutants specifically PM10, PM2.5 and CO and associated health impacts due to current energy use in Amlekhganj VDC of central lowland Nepal. Gravimetric Analysis and NDIR Spectrophotometer method were used to measure PM10 and CO concentration for the household equipped with and without biogas. PM2.5 was further calculated by formula given by MoSTE. Information on energy dependency of households and associated human health impacts were obtained through household schedule survey, KII and FGD. The emission of biogas in terms of CO and PM (PM2.5 and PM10) was within recommendation limits by national guideline as compared to households without biogas. CO was the only parameter that has exceeded the safe limit recommended by national guideline in households without biogas. Weak negative and weak positive relations between PM2.5 – CO were observed in households with and without biogas respectively. Among the various indoor air quality parameters, only few parameters were found to be statistically significant. Community members were found to be aware of negative health impact resulting from use of firewood as primary or secondary source of energy whereas biogas was perceived as clean energy source with no health effects. Women were primarily responsible for kitchen drudgery including firewood collection and cooking and reported to have more health problems as compared to other family members. Biogas was found to be better alternative to firewood to maintain better indoor air quality and negative health impacts. Community was found to be specifically interested in biogas plant installation in condition better services are available locally. Study recommends successful implementation of biogas program through pre requisite planning for minimizing negative human health impacts due to firewood use.

Keywords: Indoor air quality, PM2.5, CO


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