Title: The approach of Swedish municipalities to the preservation of agricultural land in a planning context

Authors: Madeleine Granvik; Torun Jacobsson; Lisa Blix-Germundsson; Anders Larsson

Addresses: Department of Urban and Rural Development, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), Uppsala, Sweden ' Municipality of Östersund, Östersund, Sweden ' Omvärld Alnarp, Faculty of Landscape Architecture, Horticulture and Crop Production Science, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), Alnarp, Sweden ' Department of Landscape Architecture, Planning and Management, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), Alnarp, Sweden

Abstract: Agricultural land is one of the primary natural resources for human life. Climate change, peak oil, peak soil and a growing world population are factors that are likely to increase the importance of land in relation to both food production and the cultivation of energy crops. The current legal protection for agricultural land in Sweden is considered weak. The aim of this paper is to present the 'state of art' in respect of how Swedish municipalities approach the issue of preserving agricultural land. The topic is analysed in the context of municipal spatial planning, through which policies, strategies and motives pertaining to the preservation of agricultural land are asserted. Results from three empirical studies show that a relatively high degree of the responding municipalities stated an interest in the preservation of agricultural land. However, their actual planning practice did not confirm such an approach.

Keywords: agricultural land; municipal spatial planning; resilience; planning paradigm; environmental paradigm; municipalities; land preservation; Sweden; legal protection; sustainability; sustainable development; agriculture.

DOI: 10.1504/IJARGE.2015.072903

International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, 2015 Vol.11 No.2, pp.190 - 204

Received: 27 Jun 2014
Accepted: 27 Jun 2015

Published online: 06 Nov 2015 *

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