Section 37
Chapter 36,909

Nature conservation for what? Analyses of urban and rural nature reserves in southern Sweden 1909–2006

Borgström, S.; Lindborg, R.; Elmqvist, T.

Landscape and Urban Planning 117: 66-80


ISSN/ISBN: 0169-2046
DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2013.04.010
Accession: 036908110

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To effectively integrate nature conservation into sustainable landscape management, it is essential to deepen the understanding of why, what, where and for whom nature is protected. This is especially important for nature conservation in human dominated landscapes such as cities, where built up and protected areas are moving closer to each other due to worldwide urbanization. In this study we analyzed historical and current data in Sweden to examine how decision makers have used the nature conservation objectives stated by law to establish urban and rural nature protected areas respectively. The focal conservation objectives are the preservation of biodiversity (species and habitats), outdoor recreation and restoration of environments. How these objectives were used was analyzed for all 1869 nature reserves in southern Sweden in relation to degree of urbanization in the landscape. We found that nature reserves in more urbanized landscapes were based on a higher number of objectives and had a different composition of objectives compared to rural reserves. The objectives outdoor recreation and species biodiversity preservation were more common in urban reserves, while preservation of habitats were more common in rural. From the last decades we found indications of a shift in use of objectives in urban areas, going from outdoor recreation to a stronger focus on species diversity conservation. National and global trends in the nature conservation debate were also reflected in the use of objectives over time.

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