“They give you lots of information, but ignore what it's really about”: residents' experiences with the planned introduction of a new high-voltage power line

  • Author: Porsius, Claassen, Weijland & Timmermans
  • Journal: Journal of Environmental Planning and Management
  • Issue: 8
  • Volume: 59
  • Pages: 1495-1512


Cases of strong local opposition to the planned introduction of new high-voltage power lines (HVPLs) have been documented in the past. During and after the planning process for a new HVPL, local residents will be informed about the siting process and its outcomes. Although it has been suggested in the literature that this communication plays an important role in residents’ responses to a new HVPL, it has been rarely empirically studied. In this qualitative study, we conducted in-depth interviews with 15 residents about their experiences with the planned introduction of a new HVPL near their homes. Thematic analysis revealed that residents’ experiences were centred around negative expectations of living near the new HVPL and perceived injustice of the planning process and its outcomes. Residents’ perception that communication was not tailored to their information needs played a significant role in these negative experiences. Suggestions for improving communication will be discussed.