Disposal of pesticide waste from agricultural production in the Al-Batinah region of Northern Oman

Said Al Zadjali, Stephen Morse, Jonathan Chenoweth, Mike Deadman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

During the last two decades Oman has experienced rapid economic development but this has been accompanied by environmental problems. Manufacturing and agricultural output have increased substantially but initially this was not balanced with sufficient environmental management. Although agriculture in Oman is not usually considered a major component of the economy, government policy has been directed towards diversification of national income and as a result there has been an increasing emphasis on revenue from agriculture and an enhancement of production via the use of irrigation, machinery and inputs such as pesticides. In recent years this has been tempered with a range of interventions to encourage more sustainable production. Certain pesticides have been prohibited; there has been a promotion of organic agriculture and an emphasis on education and awareness programs for farmers. The last point is of especial relevance given the nature of the farm labour market in Oman and a reliance on expatriate and often untrained labour. The research, through a detailed stratified survey, explores the state of knowledge at farm-level regarding the safe disposal of pesticide waste and what factors could enhance or indeed operate against the spread and implementation of that knowledge. Members of the recently constituted Farmers Association expressed greater environmental awareness than their non-member counterparts in that they identified a more diverse range of potential risks associated with pesticide use and disposed of pesticide waste more in accordance with government policy, albeit government policy with gaps. Workers on farms belonging to Association members were also more likely to adhere to government policy in terms of waste disposal. The Farmers Association appears to be an effective conduit for the diffusion of knowledge about pesticide legislation and general awareness, apparently usurping the state agricultural extension service.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-242
Number of pages6
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume463-464
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2013

Keywords

  • Oman
  • Pesticide disposal
  • Pesticides
  • Safety
  • Socio-economic aspects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Pollution
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Environmental Engineering

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