News & Events  |  Posted November 1, 2023

The Mark Turnbull Symposium: Designing the Landscape of Power

Balancing Climate, Energy Transition and Communities

SLA are pleased to share the video of this important event. Inspired by the work and approach of Mark Turnbull, the symposium focused on key issues to be addressed by all of us, including the landscape profession, against the background of Climate, Energy Transmission and Communities especially in Scotland.

Watch the event here – The Mark Turnbull Symposium

Host and moderator: Sarah Govan, from ClimateXChange, Scotland’s centre of expertise on climate change.


  • Sam Oxley chartered landscape architect and Landscape Planning and Board Director of LUC ‘setting the scene’ outlining the approach to the design of renewable energy developments and associated developments in Scotland.
  • Adriaan Geuze the founder and director of West 8 and winner of the Jeffrey Jellico prize in 2022. landscapes of change in the Netherlands.
  • Yttje Feddes. co-founder of the office Feddes/Olthof Landscape Architects and ‘National Landscape Advisor’ to the Dutch government between 2008 and 2012: Design principles for ‘windparkens’ in the Netherlands.
  • Jhon van Veelen of Jhon van Veelan Landscape Architects:  Designing the Power Grid – the high-voltage overhead grid as a landscape task.


Fiona Simpson, Chief Planner, Scottish Government, Catherin Harry, NatureScot’s Sustainable Development Manager, Ross Baxter, Scottish Power Energy Networks, and Marc van Grieken, Landscape Architect

Key issues discussed:-

  • What are the differences or similarities between Scotland and the Netherlands in the landscape profession’s response to meeting climate change targets? Can landscape architects in Scotland learn from the Dutch and vice versa?
  • Is there a potential conflict between Scotland’s commitment to the European Landscape Convention, Scotland’s drive to meet ambitious targets and maintain its huge tourism industry largely dependent on the landscape?
  • What is the role of the landscape architect in working with communities? How can we overcome legitimate community concerns about developments of national importance?
  • Can we point to any alternative approaches?

The symposium was an initiative by Sharon Turnbull and organised by Sharon Turnbull, Ian McAuley, Rachel Tennant, Keith Horner and Marc van Grieken. It was supported by Scottish Power Energy Networks.

Follow Up: Keep in touch with the SLA to find out follow up work from this important debate.