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date: 06 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Scientific research into the environmental prevention of alcohol and drug-use problems has a distinguished history, with the goal of identifying environmental factors that can be modified to reduce harmful alcohol and drug use. This chapter shows how effective community-based prevention programs have applied environmental prevention strategies to reduce substance use and abuse. Although not all environmental prevention strategies can be implemented at the community level, communities can use a number of these strategies to reduce heavy drinking, access to harmful legal products, and related problems. The authors contrast environmental prevention strategies with individual-based approaches to highlight differences and demonstrate synergies that exist between efforts to change substance use environments and programs that attempt to affect personal choices to use or abuse drugs. The authors highlight the global breadth of community-based prevention research efforts and contributions to broader based international efforts that benefit all societies, inform community-based prevention programs, and complement individual-based prevention strategies.

Keywords: Community-based prevention, environmental approaches, alcohol policy, drug policy, substance use/abuse, social ecological models, community systems theory

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