Analysis of the relationship between local climate change mitigation actions and greenhouse gas emissions - Empirical insights

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Isabel Horta
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Local actions are seen as of major importance for the achievement of climate change mitigation targets. In the past few years, the number of local action plans towards climate change mitigation has been increasing, and it is essential to analyze their contribution to the achievement of global targets. Even if the relationship between local action plans and the reduction of energy use and GHG emissions is often assumed, this has not yet been validated nor quantified by empirical studies involving a large number of municipalities. Thus, the aim of this paper is to. perform an empirical analysis on the link between local action plans and energy use and GHG emissions. The analysis is composed by a test of hypothesis and a regression analysis, performed for the municipalities of three European countries Portugal, Sweden and United Kingdom. The main conclusion is that, in the context of these three countries, the analysis performed was not able to detect a significant impact related to the existence of local plans on GHG emissions. From the panel data regression analysis, it was possible to confirm that external factors, not directly related to local climate change mitigation actions, have a significant impact on GHG emissions.