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Perception among Saudis in Al‐Baha Region, Saudi Arabia, about health risks from chemical pollution

Sami A. Zabin (Science Department, Al‐Baha University, Al‐Baha, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia)

Management of Environmental Quality

ISSN: 1477-7835

Article publication date: 27 September 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to understand how Saudis perceive chemical pollution health risks. Also, it attempts to investigate whether there are gender, age, education, and place of residence differences in health risk perception.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire was designed and developed as a descriptive survey of the target population's perceptions of the impact of chemical contaminants on health. Statistical data analysis was conducted to determine the response difference among variables.

Findings

The survey demonstrated higher perceptions of health risk among females as compared to males in general and that females are more likely than males to rank items as a high risk. Most gender differences were statistically significant (F(23, 516)=4.906, p<0.001). This is in agreement with some other studies in the world. The older age group is, in general, more likely to consider something as being a high‐health risk. Also, respondents with higher education were more likely to rate more health risks as “high risk” than were other respondents. Meanwhile, there was no difference in health risk perception according to place of residence.

Originality/value

Saudis face increasing health risks due to chemical pollution. Very little is known about chemical pollution concern and health risk perceptions in the Saudi society. Understanding public chemicals health risk perceptions is the basis of an effective strategy for environmental health risk management. The results of this survey will provide useful information to policy makers to improve health risk communication and develop effective health risks management policies.

Keywords

Citation

Zabin, S.A. (2011), "Perception among Saudis in Al‐Baha Region, Saudi Arabia, about health risks from chemical pollution", Management of Environmental Quality, Vol. 22 No. 6, pp. 705-724. https://doi.org/10.1108/14777831111170821

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited