Household perceptions of climate change and preferences for mitigation action: the case of the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme in Australia
The study aims to reveal Australian households’ perceptions of climate change and their preferences for climate change mitigation actions. A web-based survey was conducted in November 2008 in which about 600 New South Wales households were asked for their willingness to bear extra household expenditure to support the ‘Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS)’ as proposed by the Australian government. The Contingent Valuation Method (CVM), a widely used non-market valuation technique, was applied using the single bounded dichotomous choice elicitation format. Results of the study demonstrate that, currently, there is a positive demand for climate change mitigation action in Australia. The main motivation for this positive demand stems from a desire to avoid climate change. However, society’s willingness to pay (WTP) for climate change mitigation is shown to be significantly curbed by uncertainties regarding the extent of climate change and the effectiveness of climate change policy. Global cooperation (major greenhouse gas emitting countries implementing similar scheme) plays an important role in determining Australian households’ support for the CPRS. Only when cooperation is assumed, do the benefits of the CPRS, as estimated by respondents’ WTP, exceed its costs.
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