PhD R de Waal - Shaping sustainable energy landscapes

In my PhD research, I look at sustainable energy transition from a landscape architecture perspective. Sustainable energy transition is shift from fossil to sustainable energy systems, which is characterized by renewable energy sources and efficient energy use. The transition requires adjustments in spatial arrangement and land use, as such influencing the landscape.


The mutual relationship between (renewable) energy and space makes landscape architecture a relevant discipline for the planning and design of sustainable energy landscapes. Stremke and Van den Dobbelsteen (2013) defined sustainable energy landscapes as “a physical environment that can evolve on the basis of locally available renewable energy sources without compromising landscape quality, biodiversity, food production and other life-supporting ecosystem services” (p. 4-5). However, we witness public resistance to renewable energy technologies (RET) which is, among others, due to landscape considerations. My interest is, therefore, in the niche for landscape architecture in sustainable energy transition, and especially how a narrative approach can help creating meaningful sustainable energy landscapes.

See also for an extensive overview of activities of the Landscape Architecture Group around the planning and design of sustainable energy landscapes.

reference: Stremke, S., & Van den Dobbelsteen, A. (Eds.). (2013). Sustainable Energy Landscapes. Designing, Planning and Development. Boca Raton: CRC Press.