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  • 1.
    Blåhed, Hanna
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health.
    San Sebastián, Miguel
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health. Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Várdduo – Centre for Sámi Research.
    Health impact assessment of a mining project in Swedish Sápmi: lessons learned2022In: Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal, ISSN 1461-5517, E-ISSN 1471-5465, Vol. 40, no 1, p. 38-45Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Whereas assessing health is a mandatory feature of environmental impact assessments (EIAs) in Sweden, health impacts are often vaguely described, making their health preventive role meaningless. In 2006, a mine was planned in the reindeer grazing lands of a Sámi community in northern Sweden. While an EIA was conducted in 2013, health was superficially addressed. The aim of this study was to describe and reflect on the health impact assessment (HIA) process that assessed the potential health risks and/or benefits that the mine establishment could bring to the Sámi community.The classic five steps of an HIA are presented. The literature review showed a scarcity of studies regarding HIA on mining in indigenous territories. Participants in the study were currently experiencing negative psychosocial health effects and described potential adverse social and health effects originating from the loss of their traditional way of life.Despite certain challenges, this study proved that it is possible to conduct a comprehensive HIA in the context of Sámi health research. Given that mining in Sweden occurs mostly in Sámi territory and the adverse health effects found in this study, the lack of comprehensive HIAs on mining projects in Sweden raises serious concerns.

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