Table of Contents
Urban Studies Research
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 918931, 9 pages
Review Article

Quality of Life and Socioenvironmental Degradation in the Cantareira System Environmental Protected Area, SP, Brazil

1NEPAM, Environmental Studies Center, Campinas State University, Rua dos Flamboyants, 155 Cidade Universitária Zeferino Vaz, 13083-167 Campinas, SP, Brazil
2Centre for Sustainability Studies, FAAT College (NES/FAAT), Estrada Municipal Juca Sanches, 1050 Boa Vista, 12954-070 Atibaia, SP, Brazil

Received 11 December 2011; Revised 7 March 2012; Accepted 3 June 2012

Academic Editor: Michelle Thompson-Fawcett

Copyright © 2012 Sônia Regina da Cal Seixas et al. 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.


Studies on quality of life can contribute to a better understanding of situations where socioenvironmental transformations are evident, from environmental, social, cultural, and political perspectives. This paper analyzes the quality of life of the inhabitants of the Moinho rural settlement in the context of the surrounding conditions of environmental degradation. Moinho is located in Nazaré Paulista municipality, which belongs to the Cantareira System Environmental Protected Area (Cantareira EPA), state of São Paulo, Brazil. The methodology used was based on secondary data collection and interviews with local residents. The results explore the interface between the transformation of land use and the growing change of rural life that are greatly influenced by expanding urban sprawl in the region. Over recent decades, changes in the production systems, substitution of agriculture crops, and the impacts of these variables on environmental health and water availability, as well as damage to the Municipal Human Development Index (HDI-M) of its municipalities, are indicators of the region’s present social complexity. This study shows that an improvement in the quality of life has an intimate relationship with the creation of sustainable economic activities and the real participation of the local population in decision making processes.