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Nigerian Journal of Clinical Medicine

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Public perception of global warming and related environmental issues in Kano city, Nigeria

Z Iliyasu, I Abubakar, A.U Gajida

Abstract


Background Sub-Saharan African countries are at an increased risk of the effects of global warming. Unfortunately they have the least capacity to adapt to its untoward effects. We studied public awareness of global warming, its perceived causes, effects and prevention in Kano city, northern Nigeria. Methods Structured questionnaires were administered on a cross section of 181 adults in Kano eliciting their awareness of global warming, as well as perceived causes, effects and ways of prevention. Results Of the 181 respondents, 132 (72.9%) were aware of global warming mainly from electronic media (44.4%), the Internet (20.5%) and schools (18.7%). They mostly attributed it to air pollution (99.2%), use of fossil fuels (97.7%), toxic waste (78.0%) and chlorofluorocarbons (73.5%). Perceived effects of global warming include extremes of ambient temperature (97.7%), increased disease outbreaks (92.4%), floods (68.2%), droughts (51.5%) and loss of species (50.0%). Respondents opined that global warming could be prevented by using renewable sources of energy such as the sun (53.8%), massive tree planting (44.7%) and phasing out of old automobiles (43.2%). A significantly higher proportion of males, younger and educated respondents were aware of global warming. Conclusion The high awareness about global warming needs to be reinforced through use of media to encourage advocacy and community action towards preventing global warming and ensuring environmental sustainability.

Keywords: Public perception, global warming, Kano, Nigeria



http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/njcm.v3i1.57388
AJOL African Journals Online