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Framing sustainable housing as a solution to climate change

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-18, 09:01 authored by Heather LovellHeather Lovell
A sustainable housing advocacy coalition emerged in the UK in the early 1970s. It is best characterized as an advocacy coalition due to the deep green environmental values and beliefs shared by its members. Its political activities have focused on practical demonstration and life style choices: the sustainable houses can be seen as an extension of members' deep green values and government policy has, until recently, had little influence. However, during the 1990s government and other mainstream institutions have become interested in sustainable housing as a solution to a range of policy problems. This paper examines the framing of sustainable housing as 'low carbon housing', i.e. as a solution to climate change. Actors involved in the framing of low carbon housing constitute a discourse coalition: they are united by the discourse itself and not by shared values. The framing of low carbon housing is being conducted using ecologically modern discourse, primarily as a strategy to create distance from the sustainable housing advocacy coalition. Translation of the low carbon ecological modernist discourse into practice remains uncertain at present, in particular because it is unclear whether the technical aspects of the sustainable housing advocacy coalition can be divorced from the social aspects.


Publication title

Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning








School of Social Sciences



Place of publication

United Kingdom

Rights statement

Copyright 2004 Taylor & Francis Ltd

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Expanding knowledge in human society

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