Geographical Information System (GIS) as a tool for monitoring and analysingpesticide pollution and its impact on public health.
Waldemar A Turski 1, Anna Ołdak 1, Iwona A Kamińska 2 1 - 2 - Department of Toxicology, Institute of Agricultural Medicine, Jaczewskiego 2,20-950 Lublin, Poland. Ann Agric Environ Med 2004; 11 (2): ICID: 142670 Article type: Review article
Geographical Information System (GIS) combines information from cartographysources (i.e. maps), earthbound surveys, remote sensing (i.e. aerial and satellite imagery) and createsoverlapping layers that can be accessed, transformed, and manipulated interactively in one spatial structure.Thanks to the great flexibility of GIS, its possible applications are countless. For example, dynamicdatabases created by GIS can manage information from various sources and make spatial correlations withepidemiological data about temporal distribution of environmentally-related diseases. GIS has also beenincreasingly used to monitor, analyse and model pesticide migration in the environment. GIS analysishas proved to be a valuable tool in environmental and public health studies yielding important resultsthat may ultimately help prevent excessive or uncontrolled exposure to xenobiotics, including pesticides.Despite its obvious advantages GIS technology is still not commonly used for such studies, particularlyin the developing countries where the knowledge about GIS technology and its accessibility is limited.The presented review briefly explains the basic features of GIS and discusses exemplary studies wherethis technology has been successfully used for monitoring and analysing pesticide pollution and its impacton public health.