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The Phase-Out of Leaded Gasoline in the EU: A Successful Failure?


Author Info

  • Löfgren, Åsa

    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

  • Hammar, Henrik

    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)


The objective of this paper is to analyze in both descriptive and econometric terms the phase-out of leaded gasoline consumption in the EU countries. The phase-out process is characterized by increased consumption of unleaded gasoline. We analyze the importance of price differences, share of catalytic converters, income per capita, and country characteristics in the phase-out process. Since the expected maintenance costs of using unleaded gasoline in cars without catalytic converters compared to the use of leaded gasoline differ insignificantly according to available evidence, and consumers still use leaded gasoline even though unleaded gasoline is cheaper; we interpret this as a lack of reliable information. The results indicate that countries, which have not yet phased out leaded gasoline, should do this by either banning leaded gasoline or by increasing the tax differential between leaded and unleaded gasoline depending on the objective of the social planner.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 19.

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Length: 21 pages
Date of creation: 07 Dec 1999
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Transportation Research Part D, Transport and Environment, 2000, pages 419-431.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0019

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Box 640, SE 405 30 GÖTEBORG, Sweden
Phone: 031-773 10 00
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Keywords: Leaded gasoline; unleaded gasoline; policy instruments; tax differential;

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Cited by:
  1. Charles Raux, 2002. "The Use of Transferable Permits in the Transport Sector," Post-Print halshs-00080454, HAL.


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