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Automobile Fuel Economy Standards: Impacts, Efficiency, and Alternatives

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  • Soren T. Anderson
  • Carolyn Fischer
  • Ian Parry
  • James M. Sallee

Abstract

This paper discusses fuel economy regulations in the United States and other countries. We first describe how these programs affect the automobile market, including their impacts on fuel use and other dimensions of the vehicle fleet. We then review different methodologies for assessing the costs of fuel economy regulations and discuss what the results of these methodologies imply for policy. Following that, we compare the welfare effects of fuel economy regulations to those of fuel taxes and assess whether or not these two policies can be complements. Finally, we review arguments for transitioning away from fuel economy regulations towards a “feebate” system.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16370.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Publication status: published as Soren T. Anderson & Ian W. H. Parry & James M. Sallee & Carolyn Fischer, 2011. "Automobile Fuel Economy Standards: Impacts, Efficiency, and Alternatives," Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, Oxford University Press for Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 5(1), pages 89-108, Winter.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16370

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References

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  1. Joseph E. Aldy & Alan J. Krupnick & Richard G. Newell & Ian W. H. Parry & William A. Pizer, 2010. "Designing Climate Mitigation Policy," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(4), pages 903-34, December.
  2. Soren T. Anderson & James M. Sallee, 2009. "Using Loopholes to Reveal the Marginal Cost of Regulation: The Case of Fuel-Economy Standards," Working Papers 0901, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
  3. Dominika Kalinowska & Kerim Keser & Uwe Kunert, 2009. "CO2 Based Taxation on Cars Is Rising in Europe," Weekly Report, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 5(23), pages 159-170.
  4. Christopher R. Knittel, 2011. "Automobiles on Steroids: Product Attribute Trade-Offs and Technological Progress in the Automobile Sector," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(7), pages 3368-99, December.
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  7. Thomas Klier & Joshua Linn, 2012. "New‐vehicle characteristics and the cost of the Corporate Average Fuel Economy standard," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 43(1), pages 186-213, 03.
  8. Shanjun Li, 2012. "Traffic safety and vehicle choice: quantifying the effects of the ‘arms race’ on American roads," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(1), pages 34-62, 01.
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  10. Greene, David L. & Patterson, Philip D. & Singh, Margaret & Li, Jia, 2005. "Feebates, rebates and gas-guzzler taxes: a study of incentives for increased fuel economy," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 757-775, April.
  11. Sarah E. West & Roberton C. Williams III, 2005. "The Cost of Reducing Gasoline Consumption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 294-299, May.
  12. Austin, David & Dinan, Terry, 2005. "Clearing the air: The costs and consequences of higher CAFE standards and increased gasoline taxes," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 562-582, November.
  13. Parry, Ian & Fischer, Carolyn & Harrington, Winston, 2004. "Should Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) Standards Be Tightened?," Discussion Papers dp-04-53, Resources For the Future.
  14. Fischer, Carolyn, 2008. "Comparing flexibility mechanisms for fuel economy standards," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 3106-3114, August.
  15. Richard S. J. Tol, 2009. "The Economic Effects of Climate Change," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(2), pages 29-51, Spring.
  16. Fischer, Carolyn, 2005. "On the importance of the supply side in demand-side management," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 165-180, January.
  17. Fischer, Carolyn, 2010. "Imperfect Competition, Consumer Behavior, and the Provision of Fuel Efficiency in Light-Duty Vehicles," Discussion Papers dp-10-60, Resources For the Future.
  18. Steve Newbold & Charles Griffiths & Christopher C. Moore & Ann Wolverton & Elizabeth Kopits, 2010. "The "Social Cost of Carbon" Made Simple," NCEE Working Paper Series 201007, National Center for Environmental Economics, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, revised Aug 2010.
  19. Philippe Barla & Stef Proost, 2008. "Automobile fuel efficiency policies with international innovation spillovers," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces0817, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
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  21. Bento, Antonio M. & Goulder, Lawrence H. & Jacobsen, Mark R. & von Haefen, Roger H., 2007. "Distributional and Efficiency Impacts of Increased U.S. Gasoline Taxes," Working Papers 127021, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Klier, Thomas & Linn, Joshua, 2013. "Fuel prices and new vehicle fuel economy—Comparing the United States and Western Europe," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 280-300.
  2. Huse, Cristian & Lucinda, Claudio, 2013. "The Market Impact and the Cost of Environmental Policy: Evidence from the Swedish Green Car Rebate," MPRA Paper 48905, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Werner Antweiler & Sumeet Gulati, 2013. "Market-Based Policies for Green Motoring in Canada," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 39(s2), pages 81-94, August.
  4. Klier, Thomas & Linn, Joshua, 2012. "Using Vehicle Taxes to Reduce Carbon Dioxide Emissions Rates of New Passenger Vehicles: Evidence from France, Germany, and Sweden," Discussion Papers dp-12-34, Resources For the Future.
  5. James M. Sallee & Joel Slemrod, 2010. "Car Notches: Strategic Automaker Responses to Fuel Economy Policy," NBER Working Papers 16604, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Julie Rozenberg & Adrien Vogt-Schilb & Stephane Hallegatte, 2013. "Efficiency and Acceptability of Climate Policies: Race Against the Lock-ins," Review of Environment, Energy and Economics - Re3, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, November.
  7. Rozenberg, Julie & Vogt-Schilb, Adrien & Hallegatte, Stephane, 2014. "Transition to clean capital, irreversible investment and stranded assets," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6859, The World Bank.
  8. Adamos Adamou & Sofronis Clerides & Theodoros Zachariadis, 2012. "Trade-offs in CO2-Oriented Vehicle Tax Reforms: A Case Study of Greece," Working Paper Series 33_12, The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis.
  9. Huse, Cristian, 2014. "Fast and Furious (and Dirty): How Asymmetric Regulation May Hinder Environmental Policy," MPRA Paper 48909, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. Massimo Anna Alberini & Massimo Filippini & Markus Bareit, 2014. "Does the Swiss Car Market Reward Fuel Efficient Cars? Evidence from Hedonic Pricing Regressions, Matching and a Regression Discontinuity Design," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 14/190, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
  11. Adamos Adamou & Sofronis Clerides & Theodoros Zachariadis, 2012. "Assessment of CO2-Oriented Vehicle Tax Reforms: A Case Study of Greece," University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics 04-2012, University of Cyprus Department of Economics.
  12. Clifford Winston, 2013. "On the Performance of the U.S. Transportation System: Caution Ahead," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(3), pages 773-824, September.
  13. Tsvetanov, Tsvetan & Segerson, Kathleen, 2013. "Re-evaluating the role of energy efficiency standards: A behavioral economics approach," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 347-363.
  14. Hallegatte, Stephane & Fay, Marianne & Vogt-Schilb, Adrien, 2013. "Green industrial policies : when and how," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6677, The World Bank.
  15. Adriaan Perrels & Tarja Tuovinen, 2012. "The Effectiveness of Differentiation of the Finnish Car Purchase Tax according to Carbon Dioxide Emission Performance," Research Reports 168, Government Institute for Economic Research Finland (VATT).
  16. Adamos Adamou & Sofronis Clerides & Theodoros Zachariadis, 2012. "Designing Carbon Taxation Schemes for Automobiles: A Simulation Exercise for Germany," University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics 01-2012, University of Cyprus Department of Economics.

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