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Transitions between technological generations of alternative fuel vehicles in Brazil

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  • Brito, Thiago Luis Felipe
  • Islam, Towhidul
  • Stettler, Marc
  • Mouette, Dominique
  • Meade, Nigel
  • Moutinho dos Santos, Edmilson

Abstract

The transportation sector is responsible for nearly a quarter of greenhouse gases emissions (GHG); thus, incisive policies are necessary to mitigate the sector’s effect on climate change. Promoting alternative fuel vehicles (AFV) is an essential strategy to reduce GHG emissions in the short term. Here, we study the effects of governmental incentives on the diffusion of ethanol and flex-fuel vehicle technologies in Brazil. We use a multi-generation diffusion model which assumes that new technologies introduce fresh market potential for adopters as well as upgraders from established technologies. Our analysis indicates that tax rates affected the adoption of both gasoline and ethanol technology, but for flex vehicles, the effect of taxation is not significant. The effect of fuel price shocks during the 1990s meant that the introduction of ethanol technology made no significant impact on market potential and a negative word-of-mouth effect contributed to the technology’s failure. In contrast, the introduction of flex technology led to almost a doubling of total market potential. As policy suggestions, we emphasise the importance of tax reduction in addition to promoting versatile technologies, which insulate consumers against price fluctuations.

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  • Brito, Thiago Luis Felipe & Islam, Towhidul & Stettler, Marc & Mouette, Dominique & Meade, Nigel & Moutinho dos Santos, Edmilson, 2019. "Transitions between technological generations of alternative fuel vehicles in Brazil," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 134(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:134:y:2019:i:c:s0301421519304938
    DOI: 10.1016/j.enpol.2019.110915
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