Academic journal article Iranian Journal of Public Health

Assessment of Air Pollution Impacts on Population Health in Bejaia City, Northern Algeria

Academic journal article Iranian Journal of Public Health

Assessment of Air Pollution Impacts on Population Health in Bejaia City, Northern Algeria

Article excerpt

Introduction

This paper presents an epidemiological approach in respiratory diseases produced by air pollutants, with specific attention directed to the automobile pollutants in urban area. Here, the term -respira- tory diseases" refers to respiratory disorders like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease COPD, asthma, lung cancer and emphysema. It requires hospital admission of patient and in many cases produces his mortality.

Many studies have shown evidence in the associa- tion between air pollution and human health in urban areas (1-10). In the last 30 years, evidence on adverse health effects -both increased hospi- talization and mortality - of elevated ambient lev- els of air pollutants has been accumulating (6,11), more so recently with the use of meta-analyses of single-city time-series analyses (12-14) or multi- city studies (15).

So, various recent approaches were inventing. The most common approach is an intervention study of short-term changes in air pollution and subse- quent health responses from a specific and local event(16-21).They elaborate models to estimate the effects of short-term exposure to ambient air pollution on health such us a Bayesian model used in time series studies (22, 23). Other studies exam- ined long-term action at local, regional or global scale. Here too, they use large statistical methods to estimate the long-term effects of air pollutants (Particle Matter PM, Volatile Organic Compo- nents VOC and nitrogen dioxide NO2) on mor- bidity and mortality from cardiopulmonary diseas- es in different parts of the world (24-33).

Few studies have evaluated whether reductions in air pollution on the scale of years are associated with improved population health.

Relatively, little is known about the health state of human living in low income countries. It is well known that the monitoring of air pollution is very important to assess adverse health effects of these environmental stressors in humans. Perhaps, this can explain why in Algeria, where automobile is the principal source of air pollution in urban area, there are no such studies. For instance, in the case of Bejaia, which is one of Algerian littoral wilaya (department) and which saw a very intense vehicle traffic, there is no information about the pollution degree. This intensity is especially getting from its economic activity thanks to its dynamic port.

Moreover it is classified, in 2011, the first at the national level regarding its economy. In addition, in summer, road traffic is most intense because of efflux of tourists visiting the coastal towns of this wilaya. The strong correlation between the pollu- tion measured and the number of vehicles consti- tuting the traffic confirms that the air pollution of this city is mainly from automobile origin. On the whole, this pollution is not without impacts on the population of this agglomeration. For a popula- tion of 912579 inhabitants, like that of Béjaia, with a number of 174847 vehicles in 2009, the study of the medical effects generated by this kind of pol- lution proved to be necessary.

This paper details the first step towards quantify- ing the environmental impacts in Béjaia. The study presented addresses the need to assess the health impact of air pollution in Bejaia (Algeria). Here we focus our attention on flows down a rough bottom. First, we will describe the used method. Second, we will present the results data and discuss on the different points getting from these results.

Methods

Bejaia vehicle fleet

During the period (1970-2012) the vehicle fleet has approximately multiplied by 20. So, it passed from 11285vehicles in 1970 to 214189 vehicles in December 2012.The average age of the automo- bile fleet has increased from about 5.5 to 8.5 years, thus increasing the likelihood of vehicles with poorly functioning emission control systems. Ta- ble 1 shows Bejaia's Vehicle fleet in circulation from 1999 to 2012.

There are several approaches in epidemiological studies of air pollution. …

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