Assessing the level of Particulate Matter and Carbon Monoxide exposure in the Kaase Community of Kumasi Metropolis, Ghana.

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September, 2019
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Particulate matter (PM) is made of solid and liquid particles from industry, traffic, domestic heating and various natural sources while carbon monoxide (CO) is scentless and profoundly poisonous gas, virtually undetectable by an individual during exposure. Both PM and CO pose some health problems. This study looked at the occupational and environmental health risks of exposure to CO and PM from biomass (car tyre and firewood smoke). The PM and CO monitoring and sampling took place in two locations (the abattoir area and 100 meters into the community) purposively selected from Kaasi Community, in the Asokwa Municipality of Kumasi- Ghana. The meat preparation technologies identified was the use of car tyre and firewood. Measurement were made on a minute basis using Aeroqual Series 500 (S500) gas monitor for CO and Environmental Particulate Air Monitor (EPAM-7500) for PM. It was discovered that, CO and PM concentrations in the abattoir area were higher than that which was recorded in the community by a large margin of (an average five times) with a mean of CO 5.78ppm and 1.31 ppm respectively. PM levels in abattoir area were higher than the community. With PM 10, an average mean of 2.35 mg/m3 and .19 mg/m3 was seen in the abattoir area and community, respectively. PM 2.5 was also higher in the abattoir area than the community at an average of 1.50 mg/m3 and .14mg/m3 respectively. A sample t-test was carried out to compare concentration levels with local and international standards and the finding revealed that, it was within the acceptable rage for CO at (p<0.001) for USA-EPA but statistically higher to WHO. PM10 and 2.5 were both statistically higher to WHO, USA-EPA and G-EPA. Due to the higher concentration levels of PM to local and international standard, both workers and community members exposed reported some health symptoms and diseases (blurred vision, eye irritation, Hypertension, headache, nausea, asthma, respiratory tract infection, muscular weakness, chest pain etc) associated with the exposure to CO and PM. A regression analysis was carried out to check the duration of exposure and associated health effects, and the finding showed that blurred vision was statistically significant with CO exposure. Asthma and Hypertension were also statistically significant with PM exposure for a longer exposure duration. It is recommended that, charcoal, Liquefied Petroleum Gas and Biogas usage are the best in addressing CO and PM exposure.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, School of Public Health, College of Health Sciences, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of degree of Master of Public Health in Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety.
Particulate Matter, Carbon Monoxide exposure, Kaase Community, Kumasi Metropolis, Ghana