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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2024

Local articulations of climate action in Swedish forest contexts

Reimerson, Elsa; Priebe, Janina; Hallberg-Sramek, Isabella; de Boon, Auvikki; Sandstrom, Camilla

Abstract

Local actors are recognized as key drivers for climate action. Making climate change relevant and possible to act on in local contexts is thus a critical undertaking for both researchers and society at large. Connecting climate change to people's known surroundings and experiences, and framing climate action in relation to everyday practices in the local context, might then be crucial to making climate change relevant and actionable on the local level. In this paper, we explore the potential of forests to serve as such a connection. We have worked in close collaboration with a broad range of stakeholders in two case study locations in Sweden to explore potential courses of action for local climate action in relation to forests. We critically analyze these local articulations of climate action and examine the assumptions underlying them, with the aim to assess the effects and consequences of different problem representations. Our results illustrate the challenges of thinking and acting outside of the prevalent business-as-usual or more-of-everything discourses, of recognizing the importance of politics and choice, and of overcoming perceived barriers to action. We find tensions in the allocation of responsibility in both time and space - but also potential room for more local action in assumptions of un-or underused potential for political and civil action on the local level.

Keywords

Local climate action; Forest stakeholders; Participatory backcasting; Problem representations; Policy goals and targets

Published in

Environmental Science and Policy
2024, Volume: 151, article number: 103626
Publisher: ELSEVIER SCI LTD