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A general equilibrium view of global rebound effects

  • Wei, Taoyuan

How do energy efficiency gains affect energy consumption? The effects are generally called "rebound effects" in the literature. Previous studies have extensively focused on only part of the global economy to study rebound effects, e.g. energy consumption by households, one industry, or one country. However, since the global economy is highly connected among countries, these studies may lead to misleading conclusions if the rebound effects in the rest of the economy are significant. Recently Saunders (2008) analyzes the demand side by taking the global economy as a whole. Wei (2007) also provides a general analysis by using Cobb-Douglas production functions for the global economy. The present article expands Wei (2007) general analysis to explore the rebound effects from an economist's viewpoint by taking the global economy as a whole and applying general forms of production functions. The analysis provides new insights related to rebound effects: we highlight the role of energy supply as a determinant of rebound. We show that the substitution between energy resources and other productive resources is more relevant to long term rebound. We predict that long term rebound may be lower than short term rebound. And we also discover that super-conservation can happen in both the short term and the long term.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Economics.

Volume (Year): 32 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 661-672

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eneeco:v:32:y:2010:i:3:p:661-672
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eneco

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  1. J. Daniel Khazzoom, 1980. "Economic Implications of Mandated Efficiency in Standards for Household Appliances," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 4), pages 21-40.
  2. Gallant, A. Ronald, 1981. "On the bias in flexible functional forms and an essentially unbiased form : The fourier flexible form," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 211-245, February.
  3. Wei, Taoyuan, 2007. "Impact of energy efficiency gains on output and energy use with Cobb-Douglas production function," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 2023-2030, April.
  4. Turner, Karen, 2009. "Negative rebound and disinvestment effects in response to an improvement in energy efficiency in the UK economy," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(5), pages 648-666, September.
  5. Saunders, Harry D., 2000. "Does predicted rebound depend on distinguishing between energy and energy services?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(6-7), pages 497-500, June.
  6. Allan, Grant & Hanley, Nick & McGregor, Peter & Swales, Kim & Turner, Karen, 2007. "The impact of increased efficiency in the industrial use of energy: A computable general equilibrium analysis for the United Kingdom," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 779-798, July.
  7. Brookes, Len, 1990. "The greenhouse effect: the fallacies in the energy efficiency solution," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 199-201, March.
  8. Jalas, Mikko, 2002. "A time use perspective on the materials intensity of consumption," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 109-123, April.
  9. Glomsrod, Solveig & Taoyuan, Wei, 2005. "Coal cleaning: a viable strategy for reduced carbon emissions and improved environment in China?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 525-542, March.
  10. Turner, Karen, 2009. "Negative rebound and disinvestment effects in response to an improvement in energy efficiency in the UK economy," SIRE Discussion Papers 2009-12, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
  11. Thompson, Henry, 2006. "The applied theory of energy substitution in production," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 410-425, July.
  12. Dimitropoulos, John, 2007. "Energy productivity improvements and the rebound effect: An overview of the state of knowledge," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(12), pages 6354-6363, December.
  13. Saunders Harry D, 2005. "A Calculator for Energy Consumption Changes Arising from New Technologies," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-35, September.
  14. Saunders, Harry D., 2000. "A view from the macro side: rebound, backfire, and Khazzoom-Brookes," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(6-7), pages 439-449, June.
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