Recevied: Nov 27, 2021
Accepted: Jul 04, 2022
Pollution and environment
Municipal solid waste (MSW) management is an element of environmental protection, environmental health, and sustainable development. The presence of MSW in the environment may be the cause of a variety of threats, including the pollution of the atmosphere, water, and soil, as well as those related to health. Due to improper management of MSW, an adverse interaction with the environment may occur in the form of volatile chemical substances released as a result of burning. The best way to reduce MSW impact on the environment is primarily to prevent production of waste and to promote its recycling, and later proper collection and disposal. The aim of the study was to carry out research related to social awareness (of rural area inhabitants) of MSW management via incineration, as well as the dangers of improper waste disposal. The research was conducted in the form of a direct interview. An inclusion criterion was the ownership of own heat source in the household in the form of a solid fuel furnace. The research was carried out using the diagnostic survey method and direct observation. 30% of the female and 70% of the male participants declared they burned MSW, while biodegradable waste burning was indicated by 88.9% of the female and 91.6% of the male participants. The main causes of this situation were the high prices of solid fuels, the costs of waste collection, as well as the low awareness of the effects of burning MSW among the rural area inhabitants. Official control of the ways of heating households in the scope of proper MSW management in rural areas is a chance for the amount of MSW burned in household furnaces to decrease. Educational measures should be undertaken systematically in local communities, with the aim of providing information about the toxic substances emitted into the atmosphere, especially regarding the related health hazards.
Chmielewski J., Gietka M., Wójtowicz B., Łuszczki J.J., Gworek B., Żeber-Dzikowska I. 2022. Assessment of rural area residents' awareness of municipal waste incineration. J. Elem., 27(3): 611 - 625. DOI: 10.5601/jelem.2022.27.2.2226
rural areas, waste management, municipal waste, waste incineration, environment, health, environmental risk, health risk, education