Large hydropower dams’ construction, population mobility and malaria in the Amazonian Brazil

Igor Johansen, University of Campinas
Emilio F. Moran, Indiana University

Brazil presented, during the first two decades of the 21st century, massive public investments on large infrastructure projects. One of the main examples are the large hydropower dams, which changed economic, social and environmental dynamics in the settings where they were installed. The theoretical background of this study is the Human-Environment interactions analysis. Here we explore patterns of malaria cases occurrence that are locally transmitted, imported to or exported from two study sites: Porto Velho municipality, in Rondônia state, where Santo Antônio and Jirau dams were built; and Altamira region, in Pará state, where Belo Monte dam construction took place, all in the Amazonian Brazil. The period of analysis comprises 4 years before, 6 years during and 4 years after each dam’s construction. We utilize malaria cases notifications entered into the electronic malaria notification system of the Ministry of Health of Brazil between January 2004 and December 2020. We apply Pearson’s Chi-Square test of differences and logistic regression models to assess sociodemographic and epidemiologic characteristics of the infected population. Our preliminary results show during dams’ construction malaria cases steadily fell. Yet, in Altamira region, a recent increase of locally transmitted cases was observed.

Keywords: Environmental studies, Health and morbidity, Internal migration, Policy

See paper.

  Presented in Session 79. People at Risk: Environmental Hazards and Population Vulnerability