Skip to main content

Table 2 Collective discourse on the process of degradation of the lower Capibaribe River

From: Integrated approach to the understanding of the degradation of an urban river: local perceptions, environmental parameters and geoprocessing

Decade Collective subject discourse
1980-1989 “In the old days, there was just bush and a lake, there were no houses on the bank of the river. The river was clean, with transparent water, so you could see the sandy bottom. The water was drinkable, and the people bathed, and washed clothes and dishes. There was a lot of fish, of many different types. The river supported the local families, providing them with fish. Everybody ate a lot of fish from the river.”
1990-1999 “There was just bush and mud shacks. There weren’t so many houses. The river was clean, with transparent water, it was possible to see the bottom and the fish. We used to bathe, and wash dishes and clothes. There was a lot of fish, a lot of people fishing. The river supported the local families, providing them with fish. The community began to fill up with houses, the people took sand and stones from the river to build their houses, and the river began to get worse.”
2000-present day “The Beira Rio Community population has increased a lot, there are many houses. The river has changed completely, it is very polluted, it is really gross. The river is dirty now, it is always muddy, with black water. Nowadays it stinks, smells like feces with mud on the bottom. The river is full of garbage, it’s only good for a sewer. Nobody can go in to the river, if somebody steps in the water, they get sick. The river is full of schistosomiasis and germs. The fish are all gone, there’s almost no fish now, they have disappeared, it’s a disgrace, there’s nothing left! You never see anyone fishing now. The fish come up covered in sludge, they are black, like the river. In the old days, everyone ate fish, but now nobody does. We are pish and afraid to eat fish because the river is so polluted.”
  1. Collective discourse on the process of degradation of the lower Capibaribe River, constructed from the reports of informants interviewed in the Beira Rio community, São Lourenço da Mata, Pernambuco, Brazil