Pesticides in coastal Tanzania : Management, policy and concerns for human health and the environment

Detta är en avhandling från Stockholm : Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences, Stockholm University

Sammanfattning: This thesis is the first major assessment of pesticide management in Zanzibar, Tanzania. It underlines the risks for human health and the environment that are likely under the current pesticide management regime. The thesis explores different parts of the pesticide management system, including legislation, public institutions, import, distribution and sales. It also examines farmers’ pesticide management and risk-awareness, as well as agricultural extension and the sources of information available to farmers. The methods used include semi-structured and open-ended interviews, review of relevant documents, collection and analysis of import statistics, and participant observations. Interviews were conducted with stakeholders within, or with knowledge of, the pesticide management system, such as managers, distributors, retailers, researchers, extension officers and farmers. The results are presented in five papers. Overall, the pesticide governance in Zanzibar exhibits major weaknesses that expose both retailers and farmers to a variety of toxic pesticides. Both the legislative and institutional setups are inadequate for the safe regulation of pesticides, due to unclear division of responsibilities and insufficient communication between ministries. There is lack of knowledge of pesticides and their side-effects among farmers, retailers and extension officers, but also among some governmental officers and medical personnel. The promotion of pesticides during the current pesticide management regime is problematic, as there is no evaluation of the current pesticide use. Alternative pest management programs show good potential but need to be quantitatively assessed in order to understand how they might contribute to increasing yields. The availability of pesticides in the farming community is in need of further attention as not only pesticide users, but also their family members and neighbors, are exposed to pesticides. Farmer training is the most urgent priority to reduce the hazardous pesticide exposures and potential side-effects seen today.

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