Abstract

Many of New Hampshire’s dams are reaching the end of their lifespan and require expensive maintenance or removal in order to meet safety standards. While engineers and public officials struggle with the scale of the challenge surrounding various dam management alternatives, including removal, what does the New Hampshire public think? In this brief, authors Natallia Leuchanka, Catherine Ashcraft, Kevin Gardner, and Lawrence Hamilton present results from statewide surveys in New Hampshire that explore public views about dam removal. They report that a majority of respondents in three Granite State Polls prefer to remove dams when the alternative is to keep them for maintenance of waterfront property values, preservation of industrial history, or maintenance of lake- and pond-based recreation. A majority of survey respondents prefer to keep dams when dams are for hydropower generation. Respondents’ age, gender, and party affiliation often predict their preference for dam removal. Levels of formal education do not make much difference. Younger respondents, women, and Democrats are more likely to support dam removal, although this varies somewhat depending on the tradeoffs.

Department

Carsey School of Public Policy

Publication Date

Summer 7-25-2019

Series

Regional Issue Brief No. 56

Document Type

Article

Rights

Copyright 2019. Carsey School of Public Policy. These materials may be used for the purposes of research, teaching, and private study. For all other uses, contact the copyright holder.

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