Open Geosciences (Jun 2017)

Creating a low carbon tourism community by public cognition, intention and behaviour change analysisa case study of a heritage site (Tianshan Tianchi, China)

  • Wu Wenjie,
  • Zhang Xiaolei,
  • Yang Zhaoping,
  • Wall Geoffrey,
  • Wang Fang

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 9, no. 1
pp. 197 – 210


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This study attempts to explore the establishment of a low-carbon tourism community by public cognition, intention, and behaviour change analysis in a case study of a heritage site, China. Low carbon tourism advocates a way of travel with low energy consumption, low pollution and low CO2 emissions during personal activities. Behaviour change is not only influenced by internal individual aspects including a person’s awareness, attitudes, and capacity to change, but is also driven by external social aspects including the culture and environments in which a person lives. In this paper, questionnaire surveys and field interviews were used to obtain basic information, and with reference to TPB, studied and analyzed the characteristics of cognition, intention and behaviour change practice by low carbon tourism community economy participants. With the help of SPSS analysis software, we found that a person’s educational level or occupation might affect cognition of low carbon tourism, and motives for participating in low carbon tourism could reflect the public’s perception of its emotional value, cognitive value and functional value. Most respondents knew about low carbon tourism; however, when putting it into practice, habitual behaviour was the main barrier for tourists while the residents were passive and followed the needs and choices of the tourists. Therefore, a comprehensive low carbon tourism community system was proposed not only for addressing the aspects of awareness, intention, and practice from individual behavior, but also for covering policy, infrastructure, institution systems and mechanisms at the community level.