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Lowering CO2 emissions in the Swiss transport sector

Author

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  • Philippe Thalmann

    (LEURE, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne)

  • Marc Vielle

    (LEURE, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne)

Abstract

In Switzerland, transportation represents 41% of CO2 emissions from energy combustion (2016), a much higher share than in the European Union (EU) (28%) or even the USA (34%). While total Swiss CO2 emissions decreased by 10% between 1990 and 2016, CO2 emissions from transport increased by 4.5% over the same period (all data from UNFCCC database). Our projections (Vielle and Thalmann, Updated emissions scenarios without measures, 1990-2025, Tech. rep., 2017) show that the contribution of the transport sector would remain constant in a scenario taking into account climate and energy policy measures already implemented or adopted in 2016. In the EU, several initiatives have already been introduced to limit the use of petroleum products in transportation. This paper presents deep decarbonization pathways for Switzerland that demand a strong contribution from the transport sector. We find that a preferential treatment of transportation fuels raises the welfare cost of decarbonization by about 18% relative to a uniform tax on all fossil fuels. This is of similar magnitude as the preferential treatment of large CO2 emitters through an emissions trading system. We also find that the preferential treatment leads to a share of fossil fuels in total energy for road transportation in 2050 which is approximately twice as high as in the uniform treatment.

Suggested Citation

  • Philippe Thalmann & Marc Vielle, 2019. "Lowering CO2 emissions in the Swiss transport sector," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics, Springer;Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics, vol. 155(1), pages 1-12, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:sjecst:v:155:y:2019:i:1:d:10.1186_s41937-019-0037-3
    DOI: 10.1186/s41937-019-0037-3
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alain Bernard & Marc Vielle, 2008. "GEMINI-E3, a general equilibrium model of international–national interactions between economy, energy and the environment," Computational Management Science, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 173-206, May.
    2. Pietzcker, Robert C. & Longden, Thomas & Chen, Wenying & Fu, Sha & Kriegler, Elmar & Kyle, Page & Luderer, Gunnar, 2014. "Long-term transport energy demand and climate policy: Alternative visions on transport decarbonization in energy-economy models," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 95-108.
    3. Jan Imhof, 2012. "Fuel Exemptions, Revenue Recycling, Equity and Efficiency: Evaluating Post-Kyoto Policies for Switzerland," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 148(II), pages 197-227, June.
    4. Bretschger, Lucas & Ramer, Roger & Schwark, Florentine, 2011. "Growth effects of carbon policies: Applying a fully dynamic CGE model with heterogeneous capital," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 963-980.
    5. Anna Alberini, Markus Bareit and Massimo Filippini, 2016. "What is the Effect of Fuel Efficiency Information on Car Prices? Evidence from Switzerland," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3).
    6. Schafer, Andreas & Jacoby, Henry D., 2005. "Technology detail in a multisector CGE model: transport under climate policy," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 1-24, January.
    7. Florian Landis & Sebastian Rausch & Mirjam Kosch, 2018. "Differentiated Carbon Prices and the Economic Cost of Decarbonization," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 70(2), pages 483-516, June.
    8. André Sceia & Juan-Carlos Altamirano-Cabrera & Marc Vielle & Nicolas Weidmann, 2012. "Assessment of Acceptable Swiss post-2012 Climate Policies," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 148(II), pages 347-380, June.
    9. Florian Landis & Adriana Marcucci & Sebastian Rausch & Ramachandran Kannan & Lucas Bretschger, 2019. "Multi-model comparison of Swiss decarbonization scenarios," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics, Springer;Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics, vol. 155(1), pages 1-18, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Dugan, Anna & Mayer, Jakob & Thaller, Annina & Bachner, Gabriel & Steininger, Karl W., 2022. "Developing policy packages for low-carbon passenger transport: A mixed methods analysis of trade-offs and synergies," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 193(C).
    2. Vanessa Angst & Chiara Colesanti Senni & Markus Maibach & Martin Peter & Noe Reidt & Renger van Nieuwkoop, 2021. "Economic impacts of decarbonizing the Swiss passenger transport sector," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 21/352, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Climate policy; Transport decarbonization; Computable general equilibrium model; Switzerland;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C63 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computational Techniques
    • Q41 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Demand and Supply; Prices
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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