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Climate action plans: analysis of the effects on form of U.S. cities

Race, Bruce 2013. Climate action plans: analysis of the effects on form of U.S. cities. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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This study investigates the effectiveness of community climate action plans (CAPs) and their potential impact on the form of U.S. cities. Greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation and climate change adaptation strategies enacted by cities have the potential to redirect future public and private investment. Three studies have been prepared to better understand the external policy context that cities are working within, the process and tools they are using, and how climate actions are integrated into their comprehensive plans. Study 1 includes detailed case studies of eight U.S. cities that have completed CAPs. The cities are of various sizes and located in different climate regions. The case studies include a review of state and regional plans and policies; climate action plan technical and policy reports; evaluations of cities’ integration of climate action plans with their comprehensive plans; and interviews with planning project managers. Study 2 includes a national survey population of nearly 200 cities that have completed CAPs. The survey’s independent variables include city fundamentals such as size, location, comprehensive plan requirements, power sources, and political context. Dependent variables are organized into two groups: one for CAP approach and strategies, and the second for policy outcomes that modify the form of cities. Study 3 examines the effectiveness of common strategies utilizing a purpose-built greenhouse gas worksheet calculator. A model town is examined as a baseline community of 50,000 in population that is proposed to double by 2050 to a city of 100,000. A business-as-usual model and two alternatives test mitigation strategies and actions measuring potential effectiveness on GHG emissions. The thesis research findings have significant theoretical and practical implications regarding CAP influence on the future form of U.S. cities. In particular, studies demonstrate the importance of compressing growth into walkable cities with determined and fixed boundaries.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Architecture
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NA Architecture
Uncontrolled Keywords: Climate action plans; greenhouse gases; US American Cities
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 05:00

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