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Esmeraldeños perceive the refinery to be a source of income, as well as a source of environmental pollution. Many believe that the refinery provides job opportunities and builds roads, schools, and hospitals. They may even know a couple people from the community that work there, but they also know about the fumes that are constantly emitted and about the rashes that they get when any of them decides to do laundry in the river or allows their children to play in the water.

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Photo by the Esmeraldas Field Research Team.