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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(9), 980; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14090980

Peri-Urbanism in Globalizing India: A Study of Pollution, Health and Community Awareness

1
Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, Brighton BN1 9RE, UK
2
Centre of Social Medicine and Community Health, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi 110067, India
3
Department of Psychology, University of Kashmir, Hazratbal, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir 190006, India
4
Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) and STEPS Centre, University of Sussex, Brighton BN1 9RH, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 June 2017 / Revised: 18 August 2017 / Accepted: 25 August 2017 / Published: 30 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Housing and Health)
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Abstract

This paper examines the intersection between environmental pollution and people’s acknowledgements of, and responses to, health issues in Karhera, a former agricultural village situated between the rapidly expanding cities of New Delhi (India’s capital) and Ghaziabad (an industrial district in Uttar Pradesh). A relational place-based view is integrated with an interpretive approach, highlighting the significance of place, people’s emic experiences, and the creation of meaning through social interactions. Research included surveying 1788 households, in-depth interviews, participatory mapping exercises, and a review of media articles on environment, pollution, and health. Karhera experiences both domestic pollution, through the use of domestic waste water, or gandapani, for vegetable irrigation, and industrial pollution through factories’ emissions into both the air and water. The paper shows that there is no uniform articulation of any environment/health threats associated with gandapani. Some people take preventative actions to avoid exposure while others do not acknowledge health implications. By contrast, industrial pollution is widely noted and frequently commented upon, but little collective action addresses this. The paper explores how the characteristics of Karhera, its heterogeneous population, diverse forms of environmental pollution, and broader governance processes, limit the potential for citizen action against pollution. View Full-Text
Keywords: peri-urban; agriculture; water pollution; industrial pollution; health; collective action; urbanization peri-urban; agriculture; water pollution; industrial pollution; health; collective action; urbanization
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Waldman, L.; Bisht, R.; Saharia, R.; Kapoor, A.; Rizvi, B.; Hamid, Y.; Arora, M.; Chopra, I.; Sawansi, K.T.; Priya, R.; Marshall, F. Peri-Urbanism in Globalizing India: A Study of Pollution, Health and Community Awareness. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 980.

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