Annie Stephanie Nana

Working Title: "Heavy metals contamination and assessment of cancer risk related to wastewater irrigation in Yaoundé city"

Research Countries: Cameroon

Research Themes: urbanagriculture, heavy metals, human health, lowlands

Funded by Schlumberger Foundation


Urban agriculture in lowlands is one of the major activities of the underprivileged people in Yaoundé city. Its population has grown in recent years at rates in excess of 6 % per annum, and it is characterised by high unemployment and the rapid development of urban and peri-urban agriculture using urban wastewater for irrigation. There are however concerns over the nature of the environment in which this activity is practiced and the quality of water used. Studies will be conducted to highlight the impact of irrigation water on vegetable produces and the associated human health hazards in order to identify the ways for improvement and reduce risks.

Questionnaire interviews will be used to gather information on common methods used for farming in the main cultivated urban lowland sites in Yaoundé. The sites will be selected according to agricultural practices, the proximity of pollution, vegetable produces and the type of water used for irrigation. The heavy metals properties of irrigation water, soils and vegetables produce will be analysed using standard protocol. The health risk assessment of heavy metal will be based on the guidelines and Exposure Factors Handbook edited by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

As expected results, this study will give information about the socio-economic profile of farmers involved, the type of vegetable crops, type of inputs used and the background of health status of farmers. The heavy metals characteristics of water used for watering crops, soils and main cultivated vegetable crops produced in the city of Yaoundé will be presented as well. The level of risks on the human health will be highlighted and the options for reducing proposed. Additionally, the evolution of heavy metals in water, soil and plants will be well known.



Prof. Dr. Christian Borgemeister (ZEF)


Phone: +49 228 / 73 - 6726

Email: annienana95(at)

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