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Motor Vehicle Fuel Efficiency and Traffic Fatalities

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  • Robert B. Noland

Abstract

This paper analyzes the impact of changes in average fuel efficiency on traffic-related fatalities while controlling for other confounding effects. These other effects include population, per capita income, per capita alcohol consumption, existence of safety-belt laws (and safety-belt usage), and age cohorts in the population. State-level time-series data over 24 years is used with a fixed effect negative binomial regression model that accounts for both the distributional properties of accident count data and heterogeneity. Other studies of this issue have not used either panel data in this way nor have they used appropriate statistical methods for count data. Results vary with the selection of the time series used. Overall results suggest that while there may have been an association between fleet fuel efficiency improvements and traffic fatalities in the 1970s, this has largely disappeared. There are suggestions that variance in the composition of the vehicle fleet may have adverse safety impacts.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert B. Noland, 2004. "Motor Vehicle Fuel Efficiency and Traffic Fatalities," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 4), pages 1-22.
  • Handle: RePEc:aen:journl:2004v25-04-a01
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Michael L. Anderson & Maximilian Auffhammer, 2014. "Pounds That Kill: The External Costs of Vehicle Weight," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 81(2), pages 535-571.
    2. Noland, Robert B., 2013. "From theory to practice in road safety policy: Understanding risk versus mobility," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 71-84.
    3. repec:wyi:journl:002110 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Eskeland, Gunnar S. & Mideksa, Torben K., 2008. "Transportation fuel use, technology and standards: The role of credibility and expectations," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4695, The World Bank.
    5. Ian W. H. Parry & Margaret Walls & Winston Harrington, 2007. "Automobile Externalities and Policies," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 45(2), pages 373-399, June.
    6. Antonio Bento & Kenneth Gillingham & Kevin Roth, 2017. "The Effect of Fuel Economy Standards on Vehicle Weight Dispersion and Accident Fatalities," NBER Working Papers 23340, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. 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.
    8. Mark Gius, 2009. "Fuel Efficiency and the Determinants of Traffic Fatalities: A Comparison of Empirical Models," New York Economic Review, New York State Economics Association (NYSEA), vol. 40(1), pages 13-27.
    9. Noland, Robert B., 2005. "Fuel economy and traffic fatalities: multivariate analysis of international data," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(17), pages 2183-2190, November.
    10. Sivak, Michael & Tsimhoni, Omer, 2009. "Fuel efficiency of vehicles on US roads: 1923-2006," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(8), pages 3168-3170, August.

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    JEL classification:

    • F0 - International Economics - - General

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