Nov 6, 2002

Daily average exposures to respirable particulate matter from combustion of biomass fuels in rural households of southern India

Environmental Health Perspectives
Kalpana BalakrishnanVijay Laxmi Pandey


Indoor air pollution resulting from combustion of biomass fuels in rural households of developing countries is now recognized as a major contributor to the global burden of disease. Accurate estimation of health risks has been hampered by a paucity of quantitative exposure information. In this study we quantified exposures to respirable particulate matter from biomass-fuel combustion in 436 rural homes selected through stratified random sampling from four districts of Tamil Nadu, India. The study households are a subset of a larger sample of 5,028 households from the same districts in which socioeconomic and health information has been collected. Results of measurements for personal exposures to respirable particulate matter during cooking were reported earlier. This has been extended to calculation of 24-hr exposures with the aid of additional measurements during noncooking times and the collection of time-activity records. Concentrations of respirable particulate matter ranged from 500 to 2,000 micro g/m(3) during cooking in biomass-using households, and average 24-hr exposures ranged from 90 +/- 21 micro g/m(3) for those not involved in cooking to 231 +/- 109 micro g/m(3) for those who cooked. The 24-hr exposures were around...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Particle Size
Air Pollution, Indoor
Rural Spatial Distribution
Environmental Monitoring
Inhalation Exposure
Environmental Exposure

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