Social conflict and Kentucky bluegrass field burning in northern Idaho


Afatchao, Kodjotse.. (2009). Social conflict and Kentucky bluegrass field burning in northern Idaho. Theses and Dissertations Collection, University of Idaho Library Digital Collections.

Social conflict and Kentucky bluegrass field burning in northern Idaho
Afatchao, Kodjotse.
Agricultural pollution--Social aspects--Idaho Air--Pollution--Social aspects--Idaho Organic wastes--Burning--Social aspects--Idaho Pastures--Waste disposal--Social aspects--Idaho Kentucky bluegrass--Environmental aspects--Idaho
Environmental Science
In northern Idaho, years of tension between Kentucky bluegrass (KBG) seed farmers who use open-field burning to dispose of post-harvest residue and citizen groups oppose the burning because of impacts to air quality have increasingly compounded social conflict. For years, the state agencies that make public policies for field burning have been accused of colluding with growers' organizations. Although the opposition to the practice often cites the impacts of air pollution from agricultural burning activities on human health, it remains unclear as to whether a body of scientific evidence supports the claim that the burning contributes to the degree of increased air pollution in the ambient air in the burning areas as claimed by stakeholders opposed to the burning. A recent change in the state rule making process toward more systematic stakeholder collaboration creates a synergy for diffusing the conflict. Distinguishing between the public's perception of air quality due to agricultural field burning and the measured content of air pollution helps state resource managers understand the extent to which Kentucky bluegrass (KBG) burning is of great concern in the communities in northern Idaho. In addition, a policy analysis of the conflict provides a framework for a better partnership among the stakeholders.;Using the results of a telephone survey of the general public conducted in the first trimester of 2004 on air quality and KBG field burning, as well as air pollution measurements from air monitoring sites, this study shows a strong link between the perceived air quality and the air quality measurement data in northern Idaho, with some divergences on the temporal scale of the air pollution. The results also demonstrate support of other empirical findings that socio-demographic elements such as gender, location, and involvement in agricultural activities play an important role in how people perceive environmental risk. The policy analysis identifies and explains how the contributions of past and current policies either increase or decrease the tension and regional conflict by not taking into account health concerns from burning activities in northern Idaho.
Thesis (Ph. D., Environmental Science)--University of Idaho, June 2009.
Major Professor:
J.D. Wulfhorst.
Defense Date:
June 2009.
Format Original:
xiii, 144 leaves :ill., map ;29 cm.

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