My first experience in the research of air pollution in Paraguay was in 2014 when I went with the assignment of supporting the environmental authority in the process of developing the air quality standards and the institutional framework for air quality management. This year I returned to Paraguay, but this time to investigate the air pollution produced by cooking with firewood in the outskirts of Asunción. The purpose was to collect data for my thesis research focused on the exposure of people to wood smoke. There, I worked with the Dirección General de Salud Ambiental, the DIGESA, and together have developed an air quality monitoring campaign in 110 households, from rurality and that cooked with firewood, charcoal, LP gas or electricity. We used several specialized instrumentations to detect the quantity of air pollutants that they were exposed to. Rustic appliances and strong dependency on wood were the reality in the rural neighborhoods we visited. In those places, women spent many hours a day tending the stove, and therefore, were greatly affected by the smoke full of health-damaging pollutants. Results will provide an insight into home indoor air pollution in this country, which can enhance the quality of life for many people through the introduction of electric power in their kitchens.
August 27, 2016