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Community Awareness of Health Problems Associated with Gas Flaring and Programme to Mitigate

Nkemdilim I. Obi, Phillip T. Bwititi,

Abstract: Background: Gas flaring, which occurs as part oil and gas operations results in release of gaseous toxins into the environment thus has a negative impact on the host communities including fauna, flora and humans. Previous studies focused mainly on the contribution of gas flaring to environmental pollution but not on human health. This article assesses disease prevention and treatment programs for ill-health associated with gas flaring. Methodology: This research followed a mixed method approach of quantitative and qualitative analysis. Qualitative data comprised open-ended questions that sought the thematic views of community on how the companies liaise with either community and/or government, and what they would want the companies to provide to alleviate the health effects of gas flaring. Chi square and correlations were used on quantitative data to determine agreements and statistically significant differences of responses by participants from the questions that were set on Likert scales. Outcome: Chi-square showed statistically significant difference (X2 = z76, p < 0.017), when distribution of responses to Question-1 (Benefit of oil company to the community) and Question-4 (Oil companies awareness of potential health problems in the community) were compared. Therefore, the null hypothesis is rejected i.e. there is association between variables and awareness of prevalent ill-health due to gas flaring are responded to with preventive and treatment programs. Conclusion: This notes that there is a relationship between awareness of health problems and intervention and also a lack of capacity among the communities’ low-mid social class to appropriately dialogue with the government for change.
Keywords: gas flaring / oil / awareness of health / treatment programs / ill health

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