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Consumer support for environmental policies: An application to purchases of green cars

  • Alex Coad

    ()

    (Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group)

  • Peter de Haan

    ()

    (ETH Zurich, Institute for Environmental Decisions)

  • Julia Sophie Woersdorfer

    ()

    (Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group)

This paper focuses on how consumer motivation can be tapped in order to encourage the adoption of cleaner technologies. Consumers are heterogeneous they may be guided by intrinsic motivation or extrinsic motivation. While information provision policies (such as the energy label for cars) may be effective in encouraging certain consumers to adopt green cars, financial incentive schemes (such as subsidies or fines) may be more persuasive for extrinsically-motivated consumers. We develop a dynamic theory of adoption of environmental innovations, in which information-provision policies are followed by financial incentives (first 'carrot', then 'stick' incentives). Analysis of a survey dataset of Swiss households observes considerable heterogeneity in terms of support of information- provision or financial incentive policies, in line with our conjectures. Our results will be of particular interest to policymakers interested in guiding consumers towards cleaner technologies.

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Paper provided by Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics in its series Jena Economic Research Papers with number 2008-035.

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Date of creation: 06 May 2008
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Handle: RePEc:jrp:jrpwrp:2008-035
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  1. Wustenhagen, Rolf & Markard, Jochen & Truffer, Bernhard, 2003. "Diffusion of green power products in Switzerland," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(7), pages 621-632, June.
  2. Peters, Anja & Mueller, Michel G. & de Haan, Peter & Scholz, Roland W., 2008. "Feebates promoting energy-efficient cars: Design options to address more consumers and possible counteracting effects," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 1355-1365, April.
  3. Jakobsson, C. & Fujii, S. & Gärling, T., 2000. "Determinants of private car users' acceptance of road pricing," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 7(2), pages 153-158, April.
  4. Mueller, Michel G. & de Haan, Peter, 2009. "How much do incentives affect car purchase? Agent-based microsimulation of consumer choice of new cars--Part I: Model structure, simulation of bounded rationality, and model validation," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 1072-1082, March.
  5. Frey, Bruno S & Jegen, Reto, 2001. " Motivation Crowding Theory," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(5), pages 589-611, December.
  6. de Haan, Peter & Mueller, Michel G. & Peters, Anja, 2006. "Does the hybrid Toyota Prius lead to rebound effects? Analysis of size and number of cars previously owned by Swiss Prius buyers," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 592-605, June.
  7. Uri Gneezy & Aldo Rustichini, 2000. "Pay Enough Or Don'T Pay At All," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 791-810, August.
  8. Alex Coad & Peter de Haan & Julia Sophie Woersdorfer, 2008. "Consumer support for environmental policies: An application to purchases of green cars," Jena Economic Research Papers 2008-035, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics.
  9. de Haan, Peter & Mueller, Michel G. & Scholz, Roland W., 2009. "How much do incentives affect car purchase? Agent-based microsimulation of consumer choice of new cars--Part II: Forecasting effects of feebates based on energy-efficiency," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 1083-1094, March.
  10. Blamey, R. K. & Bennett, J. W. & Louviere, J. J. & Morrison, M. D. & Rolfe, J., 2000. "A test of policy labels in environmental choice modelling studies," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 269-286, February.
  11. Wustenhagen, Rolf & Wolsink, Maarten & Burer, Mary Jean, 2007. "Social acceptance of renewable energy innovation: An introduction to the concept," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 2683-2691, May.
  12. Markard, Jochen & Truffer, Bernhard, 2006. "The promotional impacts of green power products on renewable energy sources: direct and indirect eco-effects," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 306-321, February.
  13. Teisl, Mario F. & Rubin, Jonathan & Noblet, Caroline L., 2008. "Non-dirty dancing? Interactions between eco-labels and consumers," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 140-159, April.
  14. Kahn, Matthew E., 2007. "Do greens drive Hummers or hybrids? Environmental ideology as a determinant of consumer choice," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 129-145, September.
  15. Hammar, Henrik & Jagers, Sverker C., 2007. "What is a fair CO2 tax increase? On fair emission reductions in the transport sector," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2-3), pages 377-387, March.
  16. Satoshi Fujii & Tommy Gärling & Cecilia Jakobsson & Rong-Chang Jou, 2004. "A cross-country study of fairness and infringement on freedom as determinants of car owners' acceptance of road pricing," Transportation, Springer, vol. 31(3), pages 285-295, August.
  17. Buenstorf, Guido & Cordes, Christian, 2008. "Can sustainable consumption be learned? A model of cultural evolution," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(4), pages 646-657, November.
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