There is a growing interest in expanding crop, livestock and other forms of natural resource production in peri-urban areas. In part this is to capitalize on the availability of urban wastes for recycling and to improve the management of such wastes but also because of the economic potential of such production for increasing livelihoods and for better meeting urban demands. This paper examines the health problems facing the enterprises and inhabitants of peri-urban areas, including the risks posed by malaria, heavy metals, the re-use of solid and liquid wastes, agro-chemicals, biomass fuels and food contamination. It also emphasizes how both research and assessment procedures are required to ensure that natural resource production in peri-urban areas also safeguards human health.
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