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  • 1.
    Bertilsson, Linnea
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences.
    Översvämningsrisker inom fysisk planering: Fallstudie Karlstad2007Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of the essay was to study how flooding risks affects the physical planning generally, and also to do a case study regarding flooding risks in Karlstad and how these affect the municipality vision of growth: “Karlstad 100 000”. The study has mainly been made through literature studies and scrutinises of various investigations and development plans.

    During recent years Sweden has been struck by several, both severe and minor, floods of areas related to seas and watercourses, which has resulted in serious environmental consequences, economic loss and severe damage to infrastructure and other societal functions. And now, climate change is expected to make the problems even worse. The vulnerability of society regarding floods is dependent on how severe the change is going to be, but also on how much consideration is taken to risks in the shaping of physical planning. Many of the problems revealed during earlier high flows could have been solved if the unburden capacity of the watercourse had been better and if buildings and other infrastructure had been planned in consideration of high flows and flooding risks.

    The municipalities has, in consequence of their planning monopoly, the greatest influence on the shaping of physical planning, hence a large part of the responsibility for the mitigation work is on them. But mitigating the built environment to flooding risks often collide with economic interest in the municipalities, for example building houses in close proximity to water, which denotes the risk that the necessary measures wont be taken. Unsure and contradictory information, short-term thinking in planning and an obvious tendency for urbanisation leading to an increased vulnerability for nature risks are other factors that complicates the mitigation work.

    Karlstad is one of the cities threatened by floods when the climate is changing. The close proximity to Vänern and the fact that Klarälven runs through the city makes it vulnerable to high flows. This creates a problem for the municipality regarding the work with physical planning and “Karlstad 100 000”. The municipality has based a large part of it’s marketing on the close proximity to the water and the possibility for estuaries next to water in order to attract new inhabitants to Karlstad. They argue that the state of knowledge is to uncertain, and thereby choose not to incorporate the recommendations regarding no new buildings on land threatened by floods. Instead, the municipality has chosen to investigate technical solutions to the problem, which could be considered a far more short term and also very expensive way of dealing with the problem. Thus, the short term economic profits seem to get the upper hand in the weighing between risks and economic interests.

  • 2.
    Thor, Annelie
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences.
    Effekter av upphörd hävd i Lurö skärgård: Har diversiteten av kärlväxtarter förändrats?2008Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Magister), 20 points / 30 hpStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    One of the main reasons for the massive loss in plant species diversity is the fragmentation of habitats. In Europe, open pastures and meadows are the habitats going through the most changes during the 20th century, according to the agricultural changes. In this study vascular plants were invented at five different islands in the Lurö archipelago, Vänern, Sweden. The aim of the study was to sort out whether the diversity of plants has gone through any changes in abandoned managed grasslands compared to continuous managed grasslands. The aim was also to study if a change in the landscape has made any differences for the species development or decline. The results indicate that the number of vascular plants were significantly lower in the abandoned areas than the still managed areas. Results, only from the field layer, showed same results. There was a significant difference between the number of indicators in managed lands than lands that were abandoned for 30-40 and 100 years ago. A comparison from earlier study, from a time when grazing had just ceased at some islands, showed a significant difference in plant species diversity between the years. Just a few decades can impoverish a plant community that might have taken hundreds or even thousands of years to build up. To preserve the biological diversity formed by human impact, one must continue managing the lands.

  • 3.
    Wallquist, Elin
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences.
    Besökstudie av I2-skogen i Karlstad: Betydelsen av tätortsnära skog för samhället2007Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 points / 15 hpStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The local authority in the city of Karlstad, Sweden, want the city to increase to 100 000 inhabitants, today it has about 80 000 inhabitants. To reach the goal several urban forests needs to be exploited. To get an understanding of how well visited the urban forest is in Karlstad, a visitor study were made in November 1995, February, May and August-September in 2006 in the I2-forest. The I2-forest is an urban forest surrounded by residences in three directions. In the area there are several trails, a golf court and shooting ranges. The quantitative visitor study shows that the I2-forest is well visited by about 180 000 visitors per year. 77 % of the visitors are living in residence maximum 500 meter from the forest. The different kind of residences in the neighbourhood shows who the visitors are and what activities they are doing. Many of the visitors come several days a week to the forest. If the forests around Karlstad city will get exploited as the local authority want, it will affect a lot of people to get longer distance to a forest from their homes. A longer distance could make it take too long time to get to the forest area and the number of visitors will decrease. When people don’t have time to be in the forest the stress and ill-health will increase, even the children will be affected negatively. Therefore it would be a good idea to establish some kind of reserve in some of Karlstad’s urban forests, to protect them from future exploitations. Because the urban forest have a great social value for the inhabitants in Karlstad and therefore the urban forest need to be saved in the future.

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