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The Effect of Public Policies on Consumers' Preferences : Lessons from the French Automobile Market

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  • Xavier d'Haultfoeuille

    ()
    (CREST)

  • Isis Durrmeyer

    ()
    (University of Mannheim)

  • Philippe Février

    ()
    (CREST)

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    Abstract

    In this paper, we investigate whether French consumers have modified their preferences towards environmentally-friendly vehicles between 2003 and 2008. We estimate a model of demand for automobiles incorporating both consumers’ heterogeneity and CO2 emissions of the vehicles. Our results show that there has been a shift in preferences towards low-emitting cars, with an average increase of 367 euros of the willingness to pay for a reduction of 10 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometer. We also stress a large heterogeneity in the evolution of preferences between consumers. Rich and young people are more sensitive to environmental issues, and our results are in line with votes for the green party at the presidential elections. We relate these changes with two environmental policies that were introduced at these times, namely the obligation of indicating energy labels by the end of 2005 and a feebate based on CO2 emissions of new vehicles in 2008. Our results suggest that such policies have been efficient tools to shift consumers utility towards environmentally-friendly goods, the shift in preferences accounting for 20% of the overall decrease in average CO2emissions of new cars on the period

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique in its series Working Papers with number 2013-14.

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    Length: 35
    Date of creation: Oct 2013
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:crs:wpaper:2013-14

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    Related research

    Keywords: Environmental policy; Consumers'preferences; CO2 emissions; Automobiles;

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    1. Adda, Jérôme & Cooper, Russell W., 1997. "Balladurette and jupette: a discrete analysis of scrapping subsidies," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Couverture Orange) 9711, CEPREMAP.
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    6. Francesca Barigozzi & Bertrand Villeneuve, 2006. "The Signaling Effect of Tax Policy," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 8(4), pages 611-630, October.
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    11. Berkovec, James & Rust, John, 1985. "A nested logit model of automobile holdings for one vehicle households," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 275-285, August.
    12. Samuel Bowles & Sandra Polania-Reyes, 2012. "Economic Incentives and Social Preferences: Substitutes or Complements?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 50(2), pages 368-425, June.
    13. Hassler, John, 2001. " Uncertainty and the Timing of Automobile Purchases," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 103(2), pages 351-66, June.
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