Perceived Health Effects of Charcoal Production among Rural Dwellers of Derived Savannah Zone of Nigeria
Eniola, P. O; Odebode, S.O

Charcoal Production (CP) has negative health consequences which include respiratory diseases, back pains among others. Despite this, the production of charcoal has increase in Nigeria. Information on perceived health effects of CP among rural dwellers are scanty. Therefore, perceived health effects of CP among rural dwellers in the derived savannah agro-ecological zone of Nigeria were investigated. One hundred and fifty nine respondents were selected through multi stage sampling technique. Data was collected through the use of structured interview schedule and focus group discussion (FGD). Data were analysed using both descriptive and inferential statistics. Descriptive analysis showed that the mean age was 44 years, 86.8% males, 93.7% married and 26.4% had no formal education. Majority (95.0%) of the respondents makes use of earth mound method of CP and 53.5% produced greater than 128,000kg of charcoal per annum. Respondents perceived that CP may cause skin and respiratory tract irritation/infection (70.4%); charcoal production is likely to lead to cut, crush and laceration of hand (66.7%); that CP may lead to burns (59.1%); back and muscle pains may be associated with CP (59.1%) and charcoal production is likely to cause body wounds (58.5%). Majority (73.9%) had negative perception of effects of CP on the health of rural dwellers. Marital status (β= 0.110) is positively significant to perceived health effects of CP. Level of charcoal production is positively significant related to perceived health effects of CP in the derived savannah zone (r= 0.039). Awareness campaign on health consequences of charcoal production should be promoted.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jaes.v7n1a13