Ciência & Saúde Coletiva
Print version ISSN 1413-8123
SOARES, Wagner Lopes and PORTO, Marcelo Firpo. Agricultural activity and environmental externality: an analysis of the use of pesticides in the Brazilian savannah. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2007, vol.12, n.1, pp. 131-143. ISSN 1413-8123. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1413-81232007000100016.
This paper discusses the negative externalities associated with the intensive use of pesticides in the Brazilian savannah. These externalities are mainly related to impacts on the environment and on human health (rural workers and families, consumers), the costs of which end up being socialized. The externality considered in the present paper is of soil and water contamination by pesticides. The data source is the questionnaire of the Basic Municipal Information Research applied in 2003. Maps are used in order to associate contaminated areas with agricultural activity. Some risk factors associated with soil and water contamination by pesticides such as seasonal crop area, air pollution by burning and weed proliferation, were obtained through a logistic regression. The study concludes that the results can be helpful to formulate policies and aid in the design of regulating instruments and the definition of priority areas where preventive actions should be implemented.
Keywords : Pesticides; Externalities; Savannah; Environmental contamination.