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Exploiting the Medium Term Biomass Energy Potentials in Austria: A Comparison of Costs and Macroeconomic Impact


  • Karl Steininger


  • Herbert Voraberger


The transition to an implicitly solar-basedenergy system can make use of various specificbiomass energy systems. This paper provideseconomic and environmental indicators forevaluating alternative options.The paper proceeds in three empirical steps.First, an expert survey supplies the primarybiomass potentials available for non-food usein Austria and their respective costs. Second,an inquiry into investment, operating andfinancing costs of 30 different biomass energyuse systems allows a standardized comparisonamong them and their relationship to fossilreference technologies. Third, a computablegeneral equilibrium model of the Austrianeconomy is employed to quantify the impacts offostering the use of distinct biomass energytechnologies.The results allow us to distinguish betweenthose technologies that tend to lead to anincrease in both GDP and employment (e.g.,combined heat and power production from sewagesludge biogas), to an increase only inemployment, while GDP tends to diminish (e.g.,district heating based on agricultural pellets)or to a decline in both (e.g., co-firing basedon wood-chips, bark or industrial pellets).Individual technologies could account for up toone third of Austrias Kyoto obligation, whilecombinations of technologies, triggered by acombined CO 2 tax and biomass energysubsidy for example, could almost fully lead toAustrian Kyoto-compliance. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

Suggested Citation

  • Karl Steininger & Herbert Voraberger, 2003. "Exploiting the Medium Term Biomass Energy Potentials in Austria: A Comparison of Costs and Macroeconomic Impact," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 24(4), pages 359-377, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:enreec:v:24:y:2003:i:4:p:359-377
    DOI: 10.1023/A:1023680125027

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Reinert, Kenneth A. & Roland-Holst, David W., 1992. "Armington elasticities for United States manufacturing sectors," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 14(5), pages 631-639, October.
    2. K. Farmer & K.W. Steininger, 1999. "Reducing CO2-Emissions Under Fiscal Retrenchment: A Multi-Cohort CGE-Model for Austria," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 13(3), pages 309-340, April.
    3. Rutherford, Thomas F., 1995. "Extension of GAMS for complementarity problems arising in applied economic analysis," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 19(8), pages 1299-1324, November.
    4. Breuss, Fritz & Steininger, Karl, 1998. "Biomass Energy Use to Reduce Climate Change: A General Equilibrium Analysis for Austria," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 513-535, August.
    5. Graafland, Johan J. & de Mooij, Ruud A., 1999. "Fiscal policy and the labour market: An AGE analysis," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 189-219, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Xian, Hui & Colson, Gregory & Mei, Bin & Wetzstein, Michael E., 2015. "Co-firing coal with wood pellets for U.S. electricity generation: A real options analysis," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 106-116.
    2. repec:eee:eneeco:v:65:y:2017:i:c:p:434-441 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Sievers, Luisa & Schaffer, Axel, 2016. "The impacts of the German biofuel quota on sectoral domestic production and imports of the German economy," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 497-505.
    4. Cansino, JM & Cardenete, MA & González-Limón, JM & Román, R, 2013. "Economic impacts of biofuels deployment in Andalusia," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 274-282.
    5. Couture, Stéphane & Garcia, Serge & Reynaud, Arnaud, 2009. "Household Energy Choices and Fuelwood Consumption: An Econometric Approach to the French Data," TSE Working Papers 09-044, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
    6. Olivia Koland & Martin Schönhart & Erwin Schmid, 2013. "International Trade of Bio-Energy Products – Economic Potentials for Austria," FIW Research Reports series IV-004, FIW.
    7. Schmidt, Johannes & Leduc, Sylvain & Dotzauer, Erik & Schmid, Erwin, 2011. "Cost-effective policy instruments for greenhouse gas emission reduction and fossil fuel substitution through bioenergy production in Austria," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 3261-3280, June.
    8. Randall Jackson & Péter Járosi & Amir B. Ferreira Neto & Elham Erfanian, 2017. "Woody Biomass Processing and Rural Regional Development," Working Papers Working Paper 2017-01, Regional Research Institute, West Virginia University.
    9. Pierobon, Francesca & Zanetti, Michela & Grigolato, Stefano & Sgarbossa, Andrea & Anfodillo, Tommaso & Cavalli, Raffaele, 2015. "Life cycle environmental impact of firewood production – A case study in Italy," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 150(C), pages 185-195.
    10. Trink, Thomas & Schmid, Christoph & Schinko, Thomas & Steininger, Karl W. & Loibnegger, Thomas & Kettner, Claudia & Pack, Alexandra & Töglhofer, Christoph, 2010. "Regional economic impacts of biomass based energy service use: A comparison across crops and technologies for East Styria, Austria," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(10), pages 5912-5926, October.
    11. Cansino, J.M. & Cardenete, M.A. & González-Limón, J.M. & Román, R., 2014. "The economic influence of photovoltaic technology on electricity generation: A CGE (computable general equilibrium) approach for the Andalusian case," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 70-79.


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