Abstract for: How to Improve Public Understanding of CO2 Accumulations through Use of Human-Facilitated Interactive Learning Environments

There exists much scientific evidence of how environmental emissions (e.g., CO2, SO2, and NOx) are contributing to the global warming and climate change phenomena, yet poor public understanding of, and engagement with, environmental accumulations is rampant. How can people’s understanding of environmental accumulations be improved? We argue that the adoption of the stock and flow perspective, which provides effective tools such as System Dynamics based Interactive Learning Environments (SDILEs) for education and engagement can address this challenge effectively. In our experiments, we assessed the impact of three interventions and found that education and training with human-facilitated SDILE improved learners’ understanding of, and ability to apply, the basic principle of accumulation much more than of those who were trained only with standalone SDILE or those who had a traditional lecture-based session. Such an improved understanding about CO2 accumulation is expected to support the design and implementation of mitigation and adaptation strategies needed for our sustainable future.