Towards Site-Specific Renewable Energy Planning in (Post)Colonial Greenland

Susan Carruth


This paper discusses how the reappropriation of local material practices that is, the everyday practices carried out by people in relation to, and in conjunction with, their material environment could contribute towards a revised approach to renewable energy planning in Greenland; one that learns from place and culture rather than imported concepts. It begins by reviewing the historical import of a Danish-style planning system into Greenland, linking physical planning, and specifically energy planning, to the political and cultural life of Greenland. After discussing key contemporary energy planning challenges in Greenland, a series of characteristic material practices existing in contemporary Greenland, identified through fieldwork, are described, and their applicability in renewable energy planning exemplified through illustrated research-through-design explorations. The final section of the paper draws parallels with some key theories in the field of planning, namely Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Infrastructural Urbanism, concluding that material practices can help guide and direct a more progressive and culturally- cognisant approach to infrastructure in a (post)colonial era, weaving new technologies and infrastructures into local conditions.

Full Text: PDF


  • There are currently no refbacks.