Article scientifique

Sébastien BOURDIN, Mathilde COLAS et François RAULIN
Understanding the problems of biogas production deployment in different regions: territorial governance matters too
Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, 2020, 63(9), 1655-1673.
Despite the climate emergency, there is still no consensus on renewable energies, which have to confront forms of social opposition that may well affect the success of any project (especially wind energy and biogas). We propose an original analytical framework to go beyond the nimbyist approach, combining the proximity theory and the exit-voice model. This enables us to examine the thinking adopted by biogas production stakeholders and the ensuing associations in order to identify and understand the obstacles to the development of joint biogas production projects. Taking further other theories that highlight the importance of place attachment and place identity, we show that the challenges linked to a project’s territorial governance can explain conflicts that may lead the project initiators to abandon a biogas plant’s construction. We show that considering the local residents’ interests and including them in the participative procedures are not the only factors that count, but also, more generally, coordination between all of the stakeholders. Our paper also highlights the need for an intermediary actor to play the role of facilitator in organising different types of proximity.
Keywords: conflicts, cooperation, anaerobic digestion, territorial governance, proximity

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