On Monday, the University of Los Lagos released the results of a study focused on one of the main problems in the area between Osorno and Puerto Montt: air pollution.
The study asked about the level of use of different types of fuels, both for cooking and heating, the citizens’ view of the pollution generated by their home, the acquisition of firewood with adequate moisture content, the average annual consumption of this fuel and the possibility of replacing it with another.
It was also addressed whether the public knows the Decontamination Plan, the effects of this pollution on families, the need to resort to health care and the improvement of thermal insulation in their homes, as well as knowledge of the subsidy for this purpose.
In Osorno, this study was conducted in seven urban areas, where there was a gap in access to dry firewood: 75.0% of ABC1 households reported having dry firewood supplies, while only 46.5% of C2C3D mentioned being able to access these supplies.
Similarly, there is a difference for households over the unit price of this fuel, where 53.8% corresponding to the ABC1 segment, claimed to cancel about $30,000, instead only 23.1% of C2C3D households, can reach that price, usually associated with better quality firewood.
As for the intention to replace firewood with another fuel, especially pellets, 82.7% of C2C3D households, argued that it would choose and switch to this option, while only 59.3% of the ABC1 segment would do the same.
On the other hand, the study carried out in Puerto Montt, showed that a percentage equivalent to 61.0%, corresponding to the socioeconomic group ABC1, commented to make improvements in thermal insulation in his home, instead only 44.3%, corresponding to C2C3D, said to make this modification.
Finally 64.0% of C2C3D households, chose firewood as the most widely used type of fuel, instead 31.0% corresponding to ABC1, indicated to use Pellets to heat up.
In this regard, Sandra Ríos, Director of Research at the university, said that this study “was part of one of our priority research areas, called Quality of Life and Human Welfare, which aims to produce research related to the living conditions of the inhabitants of the region, in topics such as air pollution and its effects on health obesity, cardiovascular disease and aging.”
The academic argued that “one of the strengths of this study, was the sample used through a Household Sampling system, with a size of 1,000 informants, 500 in each city, and was geographically stratified, according to its socioeconomic level. The survey was applied in August 2019 in Osorno, and in November of the same year in Puerto Montt, and today takes on special importance given the health emergency scenario by Covid 19 that we are living”.
For his part, the seemi of the Environment of Los Lagos, Klaus Kosiel, commented that thanks to the data provided by this research, a large and well-distributed geographically distributed sample could be observed, which allowed to analyze the perception of the community, regarding the problem of air quality, in the two main cities of the region. “The contribution generated by the University of Los Lagos helps us to analyze how communication management has been implemented in the plans of air quality management in Osorno and Puerto Montt, and also showed us the reality of these two areas.”
The authority remarked that “this allows us from another view and perception, to see what is happening in public opinion regarding health contingency. On the other hand, it complements us the information that we are raising as a Ministry for the elaboration of a saturated area that covers the area of Puerto Montt, Puerto Varas, and that allows us to subsequently develop a decontamination plan, which requires perception and citizen participation”.
Check out the full study at the link below.