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Water Resources Research

Evaluation of river restoration by local residents

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Abstract

[1] Today, river corrections aiming at better flood protection must consider ecological aspects such as “naturalness” and biodiversity. Gaining acceptance among local residents for these projects is important, since they impact local infrastructure and alter the familiar landscape. The question addressed in this paper is whether there are differences between local residents regarding the question of whether they think a river restoration project at a section of the Swiss Thur River was reasonable. We also investigate whether there are differences regarding the reasons for this evaluation, such as improved flood protection, higher perceived naturalness, increased biodiversity, and aesthetics. Results show that for farmers flood protection and naturalness are more important factors than for others and that there are differences among the local villages.

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