Assessment of relation of land use characteristics with vector-borne diseases in tropical areas

A. M. Sheela, A. Ghermandi, P. Vineetha, R. V. Sheeja, J. Justus, K. Ajayakrishna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Land use and land cover changes play an important role in the occurrence of vector-borne diseases. It is highly essential to identify the prominent changes responsible for its occurrence so that suitable measures can be adopted. An attempt was made to identify the prominent land use and land cover changes responsible for the spread of chikungunya, malaria, and dengue fever in the State of Kerala, India, using hierarchical cluster analysis and multiple regression analysis. Large extent of water bodies, low land and agricultural land played a significant role on the incidence of chikungunya and malaria. High population density, built-up area and agricultural area favoured dengue fever. Vector-borne diseases were found to be the lowest in places where there is no low land and with higher forest area. Inappropriate disposal of wastes generated in the built-up area might be the reason for the spread of dengue fever. Freshwater in drains of these areas is polluted and form breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Hence much attention is to be paid to provide appropriate treatment and disposal of wastes generated in the built-up area of the State In an evolving urban policy, priority is to be given to the installation of safe treatment and disposal facility of wastes especially, sewage, sullage, and solid waste. The protection of forest land also plays an important role. Economic policy instruments such as Payment for Environment Services (PES) schemes, may constitute a useful tool to encourage an improved land use management through appropriate price signals, such as, for instance, for the preservation of forested areas especially in proximity of highly populated urban environments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-380
Number of pages12
JournalLand Use Policy
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier Ltd


  • Agricultural land
  • Built-up area
  • Chikungunya
  • Dengue fever
  • Forest land
  • Land use
  • Malaria
  • Water bodies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Forestry
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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