MUSEO ARGENTINO DE CIENCIAS NATURALES "BERNARDINO RIVADAVIA"
Unidad Ejecutora - UE
Environmental Perception among Residents of a Polluted
B. GUIDA JOHNSON; A.M. FAGGI; VOIGT, A; SCHELLINGER J; BREUSTE, J.
Urban Planning and Development
Management success of urban water bodies depends on public perceptions among other factors, because opinions and attitudes can be used to identify problems and also to evaluate the implementation of rehabilitation programs. The aim of this study was to explore the environmental perception of residents living along streams of one of the most polluted watersheds in Buenos Aires (Argentina) in view of future rehabilitation programs. During 2012 and 2013, 276 door-to-door surveys were carried out randomly and were analyzed regarding two perspectives: differences in perception with respect to (1) their position in the watershed, and (2) the distance from the watercourses where they reside. In general, residents? perceptions were highly influenced by what they saw or smelled. Although they did not value the watercourses for their wildlife or scenery and did not use them for recreation, they would like them to be improved. Three main topics were relevant: (1) the type of experience they had with the streams near their homes, (2) the recognition that riverbanks have a potential for recreation, and (3) the desire and individual commitment to improve the critical environmental condition. These results have implications for environmental management and, particularly, for the implementation of riparian rehabilitation projects. DOI: 5444.0000250. © 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers.