EconStor >
University of East Anglia >
The Centre for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment (CSERGE), University of East Anglia >
CSERGE Working Papers: EDM - Environmental Decision Making, University of East Anglia >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title:Low-carbon currencies: The potential of time banking and local money systems for community carbon-reduction PDF Logo
Authors:Seyfang, Gill
Issue Date:2009
Series/Report no.:CSERGE working paper EDM 09-04
Abstract:The challenge of achieving low-carbon communities cannot be underestimated. While government policies set ambitious targets for carbon-reduction over the next 40 years, there remains an urgent need for tools and initiatives to deliver these reductions through behaviour-change among individuals, households and communities. This chapter sets out a 'New Economics' agenda for sustainable consumption which addresses the need for low-carbon communities. It then applies these criteria in a critical examination of complementary currencies in the UK (time banking and local money). These are alternative mechanisms for exchanging goods and services within a community, which do not use money, and which aim instead to build local economic resilience and social capital. The potential of these initiatives as carbon-reduction tools has not previously been considered. Time banking appears to offer the greatest potential for carbon-reduction through offering a supportive social network which meets some of the participants' social and psychological needs for recognition, esteem and belongingness - needs which might otherwise be met through material consumption. In contrast, local money systems aim to strengthen and build resilience in local economies, and their principal impact on consumption is through localisation and import-substitution - which brings carbon-reductions from avoiding transport costs. What the two initiatives share is a commitment to building new systems of exchange which meet sustainability criteria, and express a wider set of values than mainstream money. The research and policy implications of these findings are discussed.
Subjects:sustainable consumption
carbon mitigation
complementary currencies
low-carbon lifestyles
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:CSERGE Working Papers: EDM - Environmental Decision Making, University of East Anglia

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat
601514130.pdf1.33 MBAdobe PDF
No. of Downloads: Counter Stats
Download bibliographical data as: BibTeX
Share on:

Items in EconStor are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.