"The World's Worst Located Nuclear Power Plant": Danish and Swedish Cross-Border Perspectives on the Barsebäck Nuclear Power Plant

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Arne Kaijser (KTH Royal Institute of Technology Stockholm)

Jan-Henrik Meyer (University of Copenhagen / Centre for Contemporary History Potsdam)

Published Dec 25, 2018


The Barsebäck power plant is located 20 km from Copenhagen and the large Swedish cities Malmö, Lund and Landskrona are also within a 30 km radius. When the power plant was planned in the mid-1960s the location seemed ideal with short distances to many consumers in both Sweden and Denmark. In the early 1970s a critical debate on nuclear power began in both countries and Barsebäck became a symbol for the risks of nuclear energy, attracting large-scale annual protest marches from 1976 onwards with participants from both Sweden and Denmark. Once Denmark decided not to pursue nuclear power in the mid-1980s, the Danish Parliament demanded Barsebäck's closure. Indeed, Barsebäck was the first Swedish nuclear power plant to be phased out. This article systematically examines the implications of the border location for transboundary relations involving both conflict and cooperation of those engaged in promoting, building and opposing the Barsebäck nuclear power plant.

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