Advertisement

The Impact of Climate Change and Air Pollution on the Caribbean

  • Muge Akpinar-ElciEmail author
  • Olaniyi OlayinkaEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Springer Climate book series (SPCL)

Abstract

A review of air pollution, the impact of climate change on air pollution, and the population health impacts of these in the Caribbean region are discussed. Air quality standards are not usually enforced in many Caribbean countries thereby increasing the risks of morbidity and mortality from exposure to air pollutants. Among people living in the Caribbean, an increase in respiratory diseases such as asthma has been linked to exposure to air pollutants resulting from natural events and especially human activities. Unfortunately, dependence on fossil fuels (regionally and globally), poor land use and waste management, and industrialization all contribute to poor air quality in the Caribbean. In addition, climate change is predicted to exacerbate air pollution and its negative health effects in a region considered to be one of the most vulnerable to global climate change. Key drivers of air pollution in the region are discussed, and recommendations on climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies are highlighted.

Keywords

Air pollution Caribbean Particulate matter Air quality Climate change Health impacts 

References

  1. Akpinar-Elci M, Sealy H (2014) Climate change and public health in small island states and Caribbean countries. In: Global climate change and public health. Springer, New York, pp 279–292Google Scholar
  2. Akpinar-Elci M, Coomansingh K, Blando J, Mark L (2015a) Household bush burning practice and related respiratory symptoms in Grenada, the Caribbean. J Air Waste Manage Assoc 65(9):1148–1152CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Akpinar-Elci M, Martin FE, Behr JG, Diaz R (2015b) Saharan dust, climate variability, and asthma in Grenada, the Caribbean. Int J Biometeorol 59(11):1667–1671CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Amadeo B, Robert C, Rondeau V, Mounouchy M-A, Cordeau L, Birembaux X, Marcin G (2015) Impact of close-proximity air pollution on lung function in schoolchildren in the French West Indies. BMC Public Health 15(1):1CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Anderson GF, Waters H, Pittman P, Herbert R, Chu E, Das K (2009) Non-communicable chronic diseases in Latin America and the Caribbean. Retrieved September, 2016. http://www.archive.healthycaribbean.org/publications/documents/NCD-in-LAC-USAID.pdf
  6. AOSIS (2015) The alliance of small island states. Retrieved October, 2016, from http://aosis.org/about-aosis/
  7. Bautista LE, Correa A, Baumgartner J, Breysse P, Matanoski GM (2009) Indoor charcoal smoke and acute respiratory infections in young children in the Dominican Republic. Am J Epidemiol 169(5):572–580CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bell ML, Dominici F, Samet JM (2005) A meta-analysis of time-series studies of ozone and mortality with comparison to the national morbidity, mortality, and air pollution study. Epidemiology 16(4):436CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Brauer M, Freedman G, Frostad J, Van Donkelaar A, Martin RV, Dentener F, Apte JS (2015) Ambient air pollution exposure estimation for the global burden of disease 2013. Environ Sci Technol 50(1):79–88CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Brook RD, Rajagopalan S, Pope CA, Brook JR, Bhatnagar A, Diez-Roux AV, Mittleman MA (2010) Particulate matter air pollution and cardiovascular disease an update to the scientific statement from the American Heart Association. Circulation 121(21):2331–2378CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. CABI (2016) Ambrosia artemisiifolia (common ragweed). distribution table. Retrieved September 2016, from http://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/4691
  12. Cadelis G, Tourres R, Molinie J, Petit RH (2013) Exacerbations of asthma in Guadeloupe (French West Indies) and volcanic eruption in Montserrat (70 km from Guadeloupe). Rev Mal Respir 30(3):203–214. doi: 10.1016/j.rmr.2012.11.002 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Calo WA, Quintana R, Catoni I, Valle Y, Alvarez JJ, Colon WM,… Kallis M (2009) Clinical conditions associated with environmental exposures: an epidemiologic study in two communities in Juana Diaz, Puerto Rico. P R Health Sci J, 28(2):126.Google Scholar
  14. CDKN, ODI (2014) The IPCC’s fifth assessment report| what’s in it for small island developing states? Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) and Overseas Development Institute (ODI). Retrieved August, 2016, from http://cdkn.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/CDKN_IPCC_Whats_in_it_for_SIDS.pdf
  15. Chafe ZA, Brauer M, Klimont Z, Van Dingenen R, Mehta S, Rao S,… Smith KR (2015) Household cooking with solid fuels contributes to ambient PM2.5 air pollution and the burden of disease. University of British ColumbiaGoogle Scholar
  16. Cifuentes LA, Krupnick AJ, O’Ryan R, Toman M (2005) Urban air quality and human health in Latin America and the Caribbean: Inter-American Development BankGoogle Scholar
  17. de Koning HW, Smith K, Last J (1985) Biomass fuel combustion and health. Bull World Health Organ 63(1):11Google Scholar
  18. Dodman D (2009) Blaming cities for climate change? An analysis of urban greenhouse gas emissions inventories. Environ Urban 21(1):185–201CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Elenikova Z, Goossens E, Adams A (2008) Air pollution from electricity-generating large combustion plants: An assessment of the theoretical emission reduction of SO2 and NOX through implementation of BAT as set in the BREFsGoogle Scholar
  20. Garrison VH, Majewski MS, Foreman WT, Genualdi SA, Mohammed A, Simonich SM (2014) Persistent organic contaminants in Saharan dust air masses in West Africa, Cape Verde and the eastern Caribbean. Sci Total Environ 468:530–543CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Gennaro DA, Karl CB, Lorenzo C, Isabella A-M, Sanduzzi Zamparelli A, Gennaro L,… Stanziola AA (2014) Climate change and air pollution effects on pollen allergy and other allergic respiratory diseases. Allergo J, 23(1):570–576.Google Scholar
  22. Goudie A, Middleton N (2001) Saharan dust storms: nature and consequences. Earth Sci Rev 56(1):179–204CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Gyan K, Henry W, Lacaille S, Laloo A, Lamsee-Ebanks C, McKay S, Antoine RM, Monteil MA (2005) African dust clouds are associated with increased paediatric asthma accident and emergency admissions on the Caribbean island of Trinidad. Int J Biometeorol 49(6):371–376. doi: 10.1007/s00484-005-0257-3 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Han X, Naeher LP (2006) A review of traffic-related air pollution exposure assessment studies in the developing world. Environ Int 32(1):106–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. IPCC (2006) Guidelines for national greenhouse gas inventories. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www.ipccnggip.iges.or.jp/public/2006gl/pdf/2_Volume2/V2_1_Ch1_Introduction.pdf
  26. IPCC (2007) Climate Change 2007: synthesis report. contribution of Working Groups I, II and III to the fifth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Core Writing Team, Pachauri RK, Reisinger A (eds)]. IPCC, Geneva, 104 ppGoogle Scholar
  27. IPCC (2014) Climate Change 2014: synthesis report. contribution of Working Groups I, II and III to the fifth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Core Writing Team, Pachauri RK, Reisinger A (eds)]. IPCC, Geneva, 151 ppGoogle Scholar
  28. Ivey M, Simeon D, Monteil MA (2003) Climatic variables are associated with seasonal acute asthma admissions to accident and emergency room facilities in Trinidad, West Indies. Clin Exp Allergy 33(11):1526–1530CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Jacob DJ, Winner DA (2009) Effect of climate change on air quality. Atmos Environ 43(1):51–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Jacobson MZ (2009) Review of solutions to global warming, air pollution, and energy security. Energy Environ Sci 2(2):148–173CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Jessamy V (2016) A potentially explosive health crisis in the Caribbean. Newsday. Retrieved from http://www.newsday.co.tt/commentary/0,138724.html
  32. Krzyzanowski M, Cohen A (2008) Update of WHO air quality guidelines. Air Qual Atmos Health 1(1):7–13CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Long CM, Suh HH, Koutrakis P (2000) Characterization of indoor particle sources using continuous mass and size monitors. J Air Waste Manage Assoc 50(7):1236–1250CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Lowe DJ, Hunt JB (2001) A summary of terminology used in tephra-related studiesGoogle Scholar
  35. Macpherson CC, Akpinar-Elci M (2015) Caribbean heat threatens health, well-being and the future of humanity. Pub Health Ethics 8:196–208. phv008CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Matthew J, Pereira LMP, Pappas TE, Swenson CA, Grindle KA, Roberg KA, Gern JE (2009) Distribution and seasonality of rhinovirus and other respiratory viruses in a cross-section of asthmatic children in Trinidad, West Indies. Ital J Pediatr 35(1):1CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Milián E, Díaz AM (2004) Allergy to house dust mites and asthma. P R Health Sci J 23(1)Google Scholar
  38. Monteil MA (2008) Saharan dust clouds and human health in the English-speaking Caribbean: what we know and don’t know. Environ Geochem Health 30(4):339–343CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Monteil MA, Joseph G, Chang Kit C, Wheeler G, Antoine RM (2004) Smoking at home is strongly associated with symptoms of asthma and rhinitis in children of primary school age in Trinidad and Tobago. Rev Panam Salud Publica 16(3):193–198CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Nriagu JO (1990) The rise and fall of leaded gasoline. Sci Total Environ 92:13–28CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Ostro B (2004) Outdoor air pollution. WHO Environ Burden Dis Ser 5Google Scholar
  42. OVE (2014) Thematic evaluation. Climate change at the IDB: building resilience and reducing emissions. Office of Evaluation and Oversight of the Inter-American Development Bank. Retrieved September, 2016, from https://publications.iadb.org/bitstream/handle/11319/6692/CC_EnglishBRIK.pdf?sequence=1
  43. PAHO-WHO (2005) An assessment of health effects of ambient air pollution in Latin America and the Caribbean. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www.bvsde.paho.org/bvsea/fulltext/assess.pdf
  44. Prospero JM, Collard FX, Molinié J, Jeannot A (2014) Characterizing the annual cycle of African dust transport to the Caribbean Basin and South America and its impact on the environment and air quality. Glob Biogeochem Cycles 28(7):757–773CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Richter R, Berger UE, Dullinger S, Essl F, Leitner M, Smith M, Vogl G (2013) Spread of invasive ragweed: climate change, management and how to reduce allergy costs. J Appl Ecol 50(6):1422–1430CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Romieu I, Weitzenfeld H, Finkelman J (1989) Urban air pollution in Latin America and the Caribbean: health perspectives. World Health Stat Q. Rapport trimestriel de statistiques sanitaires mondiales 43(3):153–167Google Scholar
  47. Sanhueza E, Africano M, Romero J (1982) Air pollution in tropical areas. Sci Total Environ 23:3–10CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Schwindt CD, Bacchus H, Leu S-Y, Tjoa T, Klebanova Y, Delfino RJ (2010) Characterization of the asthmatic population of St. Vincent and the Grenadines: asthma severity levels and atopic sensitization. J Asthma 47(8):871–877CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Segal C, Nilsson A (2015). The use of human rights in the fight against air pollution.Google Scholar
  50. Tanveer Z, Nadeem I, Raza S, Akram N (2014) Impact of global air pollution on human health: an empirical investigation. J Glob Sci Issues 2(4)Google Scholar
  51. The United Nations (2015) Carbon dioxide emissions (CO2), metric tons of CO2 per capita (CDIAC). Retrieved October, 2016, from http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/SeriesDetail.aspx?srid=751
  52. The World Bank (1996) Air pollution from motor vehicles: standards and technologies for controlling emissions. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www.un.org/esa/gite/iandm/faizpaper.pdf
  53. The World Bank (2016) Latin America & Caribbean. Retrieved October, 2016, from http://data.worldbank.org/region/latin-america-and-caribbean?view=chart
  54. Trewin B (2014) The climates of the tropics and how they are changing. State Trop:39–52Google Scholar
  55. UN (2012) World economic situation and prospects 2012. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www.un.org/en/development/desa/policy/wesp/wesp_current/2012country_class.pdf
  56. UNEP (1998) Management of wastes in small island developing states. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://islands.unep.ch/dd98-7a2.htm
  57. UNEP (2005) Urban air quality management toolbook. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www.unep.org/urban_environment/PDFs/toolkit.pdf
  58. UNEP, Villasol A, Beltrán J (2004) Caribbean Islands, GIWA Regional assessment 4. Fortnam M, Blime P (eds) University of Kalmar, Kalmar, Sweden. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www.unep.org/dewa/giwa/areas/reports/r4/giwa_regional_assessment_r4.pdf
  59. UNFCCC (2013) Trinidad and Tobago. Intended nationally determined contribution under the United Nations framework convention on climate change. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www4.unfccc.int/Submissions/INDC/Published%20Documents/Trinidad%20and%20Tobago/1/Trinidad%20and%20Tobago%20Final%20INDC.pdf
  60. UNFCCC (2015) Good practices and lessons learned in adaptation planning processes addressing ecosystems, human settlements, water resources and health, and in processes and structures for linking national and local adaptation planning: a synthesis of case studies. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/2015/sbsta/eng/04.pdf
  61. WHO (2008) Outdoor air pollution. Children’s health and the environment. Retrieved August, 2016, from http://www.who.int/ceh/capacity/Outdoor_air_pollution.pdf
  62. WHO (2013) Road safety facts in the region of the Americas, 2013. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/road_safety_status/2013/report/factsheet_paho_en.pdf
  63. WHO (2014a) 7 million premature deaths annually linked to air pollution. Retrieved August, 2016, from http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2014/air-pollution/en/
  64. WHO (2014b) Public health and environment: ambient air pollution. Annual mean concentrations of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in urban areas, 2014. Retrieved September, 2016, from http://gamapserver.who.int/gho/interactive_charts/phe/oap_exposure/atlas.html
  65. Ziska L, Knowlton K, Rogers C, Dalan D, Tierney N, Elder MA, … Hedberg C (2011). Recent warming by latitude associated with increased length of ragweed pollen season in central North America. Proc Natl Acad Sci, 108(10):4248–4251Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Community & Environmental Health and Center for Global HealthOld Dominion UniversityNorfolkUSA

Personalised recommendations