The State of Experimental Research on Community Interventions to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions—A Systematic Review
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionBiglan, Bonner, Johansson, Van Ryzin. The State of Experimental Research on Community Interventions to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions—A Systematic Review. Sustainability. 2020 https://doi.org/10.3390/su12187593
This paper reviews research on community efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We conducted a systematic search of the relevant literature, and supplemented our findings with an analysis of review papers previously published on the topic. The results indicate that there have been no peer-reviewed experimental evaluations of community-wide interventions to reduce greenhouse gases involving electricity, refrigeration, or food. The lack of findings limits the conclusions which can be made about the efficacy of these efforts. As a result, we are not accumulating effective interventions, and some communities may be implementing strategies that are not effective. We advocate for the funding of experimental evaluations of multi-sector community interventions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Such interventions would attempt to engage every sector of the community in identifying and implementing policies and practices to reduce emissions. Comprehensive multi-sector interventions are likely to have synergistic effects, such that the total impact is greater than the sum of the impact of the individual components. We describe the value of interrupted time-series designs as an alternative to randomized trials, because these designs confer particular advantages for the evaluation of strategies in entire communities.