Advanced

Local Environment at Stake: The Hallandsås Railway Tunnel in a Social and Cultural Context

Sjölander-Lindqvist, Annelie LU (2004) In Lund Disserations in Human Ecology
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Byggandet av en järnvägstunnel genom Hallandsås har kommit att innebära ingrepp i och förändring av den traditionella landskapsbilden. Storskaliga och industriellt betonade infrastrukturprojekt är därför, ur lokalsamhällets perspektiv, inte bara en fråga om eventuella nya arbetstillfällen, modernisering och utveckling. Baksidan kan vara att hembygdens specifika och omistliga värden som förknippas med platser, landskapsbilder och rumsliga strukturer upplevs som hotade. Den sjunkande grundvattennivån och giftutsläppet 1997 till följd av tunnelbygget har ställt frågor om den sociala kontinuiteten på sin spets och den lokala kunskapen har blivit både ett synligt inslag och ett verktyg i lokal... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Byggandet av en järnvägstunnel genom Hallandsås har kommit att innebära ingrepp i och förändring av den traditionella landskapsbilden. Storskaliga och industriellt betonade infrastrukturprojekt är därför, ur lokalsamhällets perspektiv, inte bara en fråga om eventuella nya arbetstillfällen, modernisering och utveckling. Baksidan kan vara att hembygdens specifika och omistliga värden som förknippas med platser, landskapsbilder och rumsliga strukturer upplevs som hotade. Den sjunkande grundvattennivån och giftutsläppet 1997 till följd av tunnelbygget har ställt frågor om den sociala kontinuiteten på sin spets och den lokala kunskapen har blivit både ett synligt inslag och ett verktyg i lokal mobilisering i syfte att uppnå en förståelse för de problem som tunnelbygget gett upphov till. Platser och lokal miljö spelar roll för formandet av identiteter. Landskap och rumsliga miljöer är starka förmedlare av minnen, kollektiva såväl som enskilda, och spelar därmed centrala roller när det gäller att förmedla känsla för det förflutna och dess samband med nuet och framtiden. Det är inte ovanligt att det är först när värden, som man i vardagslivet tar för givna och som man sällan har anledning att direkt reflektera över, ställs inför något nytt, främmande och hotfullt, som dessa värden framstår som något man måste särskilt värna om och vårda. I föreliggande avhandling ligger fokus på de områden där grundvattensänkning och giftutsläpp har varit ett stort problem. Djupintervjuer, kollaborativ fotografering, naturvandringar och deltagande observation på samråds- och informationsmöten under perioden 1999-2003, är de metoder som har använts. Avhandlingen undersöker hur upplevelser av osäkerhet inför vad som kommer att hända med den omgivande miljön och naturen kommit att påverka boendes uppfattningar av plats, samhörighet med platsen, landskapet och det lokala samhället. Hallandsåstunneln är ett storskaligt tekniskt projekt som gör ingrepp i naturen och människors omgivning. Tunnelbygget är ett tydligt exempel på ett storskaligt byggprojekt där människor och deras livsmiljö på ett konkret sätt berörs. (Less)
Abstract
A major trend in facility siting research focuses on economic and psychological aspects of land-use regarding the location of potentially hazardous technological facilities including storage for high-level radioactive waste, landfills, chemical plants, large-scale dams, or waste incinerators. Such facilities frequently have profound environmental impact and are often understood by local citizens as intrusions on their environment that threaten landscape, place, and community. This investigation of local responses to facility siting is grounded in social anthropological theories of landscape and place. The study addresses the social and cultural impacts of the building of a railway tunnel through the Hallandsås ridge in an agricultural area... (More)
A major trend in facility siting research focuses on economic and psychological aspects of land-use regarding the location of potentially hazardous technological facilities including storage for high-level radioactive waste, landfills, chemical plants, large-scale dams, or waste incinerators. Such facilities frequently have profound environmental impact and are often understood by local citizens as intrusions on their environment that threaten landscape, place, and community. This investigation of local responses to facility siting is grounded in social anthropological theories of landscape and place. The study addresses the social and cultural impacts of the building of a railway tunnel through the Hallandsås ridge in an agricultural area in the southwest of Sweden. This tunnel project has met with technological difficulties and environmental problems such as a lowered groundwater table and toxic contamination of groundwater, soil, and surface water. A principal concern in this dissertation is how homeowners’ perceptions and views of the landscape, place, and locality—that is, their local environment—has been affected by the building of a tunnel beneath their farms and homesteads. The four articles on which the thesis build are derived from anthropological fieldwork carried out among local residents affected by the Hallandsås tunnel project. Data were collected through in-depth interviews, collaborative photography, nature walks, and participant observation at public meetings, between the years 1999 and 2003. The main findings of the study suggest that the construction of the tunnel and the subsequent environmental consequences have given rise to an increased sense among affected residents of the fragility and uncertainty of life systems and people’s livelihoods. Feelings of uncertainty regarding the future of the community and the landscape have stimulated a discourse about local history and collective memories bearing on the local environment. Shared responsibility for nature and the local environment is another theme. The building of the Hallandsås railway tunnel has both reinforced local identity within the rural community of affected residents and incited conflict as to how the natural resources of the area should be understood and interpreted. Groundwater issues play a central role in land-use disputes generated by the tunnel project. Groundwater serves as a ‘boundary object’ bordering the domains of the concerned parties: the local community and the Swedish National Rail Administration. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
opponent
  • Associate professor Borgström, Bengt-Erik, Department of Social Anthropology, Stockholm University
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
hydraulic engineering, offshore technology, soil mechanics, Väg- och vattenbyggnadsteknik, Civil engineering, etnologi, Kulturantropologi, ethnology, Cultural anthropology, groundwater, environmental impact, landscape, Facility siting, local community, Hallandsås railway tunnel
in
Lund Disserations in Human Ecology
pages
180 pages
publisher
Annelie Sjölander-Lindqvist, CEFOS, Göteborg University, Box 720, 405 30 Göteborg, SWEDEN,
defense location
Carolinasalen, Kungshuset, Lund
defense date
2004-09-29 13:15
ISSN
1650-206X
ISBN
91-628-6159-X
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
3709f983-8fef-46d9-8053-e6c4cdccac00 (old id 467258)
date added to LUP
2007-09-11 14:32:33
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:44:55
@phdthesis{3709f983-8fef-46d9-8053-e6c4cdccac00,
  abstract     = {A major trend in facility siting research focuses on economic and psychological aspects of land-use regarding the location of potentially hazardous technological facilities including storage for high-level radioactive waste, landfills, chemical plants, large-scale dams, or waste incinerators. Such facilities frequently have profound environmental impact and are often understood by local citizens as intrusions on their environment that threaten landscape, place, and community. This investigation of local responses to facility siting is grounded in social anthropological theories of landscape and place. The study addresses the social and cultural impacts of the building of a railway tunnel through the Hallandsås ridge in an agricultural area in the southwest of Sweden. This tunnel project has met with technological difficulties and environmental problems such as a lowered groundwater table and toxic contamination of groundwater, soil, and surface water. A principal concern in this dissertation is how homeowners’ perceptions and views of the landscape, place, and locality—that is, their local environment—has been affected by the building of a tunnel beneath their farms and homesteads. The four articles on which the thesis build are derived from anthropological fieldwork carried out among local residents affected by the Hallandsås tunnel project. Data were collected through in-depth interviews, collaborative photography, nature walks, and participant observation at public meetings, between the years 1999 and 2003. The main findings of the study suggest that the construction of the tunnel and the subsequent environmental consequences have given rise to an increased sense among affected residents of the fragility and uncertainty of life systems and people’s livelihoods. Feelings of uncertainty regarding the future of the community and the landscape have stimulated a discourse about local history and collective memories bearing on the local environment. Shared responsibility for nature and the local environment is another theme. The building of the Hallandsås railway tunnel has both reinforced local identity within the rural community of affected residents and incited conflict as to how the natural resources of the area should be understood and interpreted. Groundwater issues play a central role in land-use disputes generated by the tunnel project. Groundwater serves as a ‘boundary object’ bordering the domains of the concerned parties: the local community and the Swedish National Rail Administration.},
  author       = {Sjölander-Lindqvist, Annelie},
  isbn         = {91-628-6159-X},
  issn         = {1650-206X},
  keyword      = {hydraulic engineering,offshore technology,soil mechanics,Väg- och vattenbyggnadsteknik,Civil engineering,etnologi,Kulturantropologi,ethnology,Cultural anthropology,groundwater,environmental impact,landscape,Facility siting,local community,Hallandsås railway tunnel},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {180},
  publisher    = {Annelie Sjölander-Lindqvist, CEFOS, Göteborg University, Box 720, 405 30 Göteborg, SWEDEN,},
  school       = {Lund University},
  series       = {Lund Disserations in Human Ecology},
  title        = {Local Environment at Stake: The Hallandsås Railway Tunnel in a Social and Cultural Context},
  year         = {2004},
}