The Solway estuary: a socio-cultural evaluation of a coastal energy landscape

Smith, Darrell ORCID logo ORCID: , Convery, Ian ORCID logo ORCID: , Sinclair, Billy and Bold, Valentina (2016) The Solway estuary: a socio-cultural evaluation of a coastal energy landscape.

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Seascapes have long been valued by society for many reasons. The introduction of offshore wind farming places a new component in to the seascape structure adding to the ways in which seascapes can be valued. However, the associated physical and experiential change may cause conflict with established sociocultural, ecological and economic values and perceptions of value. In this report we show that, with respect to the Robin Rigg wind turbine array, issues of climate change and renewable energy technologies residents of the Solway estuary express a pragmatic approach to offshore wind provision. Individual expressions of socio-cultural, ecological and economic value reflect connections and dependence, tangible and intangible, between the physical and ecological form of the seascape and the daily activities of coastal communities. Connection in this sense is not only place specific but also acknowledges society as a reflexive and purposeful component of a dynamic natural world. Change is considered a constant in this dynamic world view. However, participants’ views are characterised by thoughts of fairness, where both the costs and benefits associated with actions needed to address climate change are shared equally by society as a whole. Understanding these relationships requires an approach designed to draw out individual, community, environmental, visual, physical and spiritual dimensions of connections built around place. The explicit inclusion of individual narratives, across a wide range of stakeholders, captures the bond that develops between society and the natural world from a living-in-place perspective and gives voice to expressions of self that articulate; environmental connections, community connections, functional connections, and personal connections.

Item Type: Report
Departments: Academic Departments > Science, Natural Resources & Outdoor Studies (SNROS) > Outdoor Studies
Additional Information: Funding for this project was provided by the University of Cumbria’s Energy Coast Campus Programme (ECCP) which is financially supported by the UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority. Support and benefit in kind was also provided by Valentina Bold and the Solway Centre for Environment and Culture, University of Glasgow, Dumfries.
Depositing User: Anna Lupton
Date Deposited: 10 May 2016 10:19
Last Modified: 12 Jan 2024 15:01


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