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Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Reducing household energy use and carbon emissions The potential for promoting significant and durable.

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Presentation on theme: "Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Reducing household energy use and carbon emissions The potential for promoting significant and durable."— Presentation transcript:

1 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Reducing household energy use and carbon emissions The potential for promoting significant and durable change through group participation Jill Fisher IESD

2 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Outline Motivation Group-based interventions Effectiveness Future research

3 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Motivation UK targets for emission reductions 34 % by % by 2050 Domestic Sector directly responsible for Household emissions 26% Transport approximately 18 % Voluntary behaviour change could contribute 30% reduction in domestic emissions

4 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development The Potential of Behaviour Change Interventions are not delivering change on the scale needed Household Energy Use (Abrahamse et al 2005) – 38 interventions 2/3rds either no reduction or a reduction of less than 5% – 13 interventions which considered long term effects only five reported that reductions were maintained Travel behaviour intervention (Haq et al. 2008) – changes over a 6 month period – not maintained after 12 month s

5 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Group Based Interventions What do we know about them? Small groups of people Meet regularly for a limited period Address groups of related behaviours

6 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Group Based Interventions

7 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Evaluation Identified 4 interventions to consider UK EcoTeams Dutch EcoTeams Carbon rationing/reduction action groups Green Streets Evaluated using De Youngs criteria (1993) Reliability Speed of change Durability Generality Particularism

8 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Evaluation - Reliability UK EcoTeams 17% reduction in direct emissions Green Streets 23% reduction in direct emissions CRAGs 27% reduction in direct emissions

9 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Evaluation - Speed of Change UK EcoTeams Dutch EcoTeams CRAGs Green Streets 5 months 8 months 12 months

10 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Evaluation - Durability and Generality UK EcoTeams 151 participants interviewed after 2 to 3 years 90 % maintained or increased pro- environmental behaviour

11 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Evaluation - Durability and Generality From Staats et al 1994 Dutch EcoTeams

12 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Evaluation - Particularism Is the intervention generally applicable? Can the technique be used universally Is it situation or population specific Participants already had more pro-environmental attitudes and behaviour EcoTeams CRAGs Incentive was offered Green Streets

13 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Evaluation The groups based intervention are successful in terms of Reliability Speed of change Durability Generality But not in terms of particularism What next?

14 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Future Research Why are group-based interventions so good at fulfilling the first four criteria? Is it possible to identify underlying elements responsible for this success? Can those elements be used in different contexts/with different people?

15 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Future Research To identify underlying elements A case study – Transition Leicester Carbon Reduction Groups A theoretical framework – The Reasonable Person Model Can those elements be applied in different contexts/with different people? Explore with focus groups drawn from the wider community

16 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Thank you

17 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development ProgrammeNumber of Participants Percent ReductionPercent Carbon Reduction Data collection UK EcoTeams1096Electricity 7 Gas 21 Water 15 Waste 20 17Meter readings and weights reported by participants Netherlands EcoTeams 153Electricity 7 Gas 23 Water 5 Waste 30 UnreportedMeter readings and weights reported by participants CRAGs50Unreported27Meter readings reported by participants Green Streets64Energy 2523Meter readings collected by British Gas Evaluation - Reliability

18 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Take meaningful action Explore and understand Achieve competence Future Research Supportive environment The Reasonable Person Model

19 Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development Future Research The Reasonable Person Model suggests that all environments can be viewed as patterns of information people are deeply concerned about understanding information people function better in environments which are supportive of their informational needs such environments facilitate cooperation and willingness to change


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