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Achtnicht M.,Center for European Economic Research | Madlener R.,RWTH Aachen
Energy Policy | Year: 2014

In this paper, we identify key drivers and barriers for the adoption of building energy retrofits in Germany, which is promoted by public policy as an important measure to address the future challenges of climate change and energy security. We analyze data from a 2009 survey of more than 400 owner-occupiers of single-family detached, semidetached, and row houses in Germany, that was conducted as a computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI). In the survey, respondents were asked directly for reasons for and against retrofitting their homes, but also faced a choice experiment involving different energy retrofit measures. Overall, we find that house owners who are able to afford it financially, for whom it is profitable, and for whom there is a favorable opportunity are more likely to undertake energy retrofit activities. The latter point seems to be of particular importance in explaining the persistent low retrofit rate in Germany. Our results suggest that professional energy advice could stimulate the demand for building energy retrofits. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Ghisetti C.,University of Bologna | Rennings K.,Center for European Economic Research
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2014

Much of the empirical literature analysing the relation between environmental innovation and competitiveness has focused on the question whether "it pays to be green". We differentiate between different types of environmental innovations, which will be disentangled in those aiming at reducing the negative externalities and those allowing for efficiency increases and cost savings. What we analyse is at first the extent to which these two typologies have impacts on firms' profitability with opposite signs, and, secondly, whether the motivations driving the adoption of those innovations make the difference in terms of economic gains. We find empirical evidence that both the typology of Environmental Innovation and the driver of their adoption affect the sign of the relationship between competitiveness and environmental performance. Innovations leading to a reduction in the use of energy or materials per unit of output positively affect firms' competitiveness. Contrarily, externality reducing innovations hamper firms' competitiveness. The empirical strategy is based on a sample of German firms and makes use of a merge of two waves of the Mannheim Innovation Panel in 2011 and 2009 that allow overcoming some endogeneity issues which may arise in a cross-section setting. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Alexeeva-Talebi V.,Center for European Economic Research
Energy Economics | Year: 2011

This paper explores the ability of European refineries to pass-through costs associated with the introduction of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS). A sequence of vector error correction models (VECM) has been estimated within a multinational setting which covers 14 EU Member States. Using weekly data at the country level, this paper finds an influence of prices for European Union Allowances (EUAs) on unleaded petrol retail prices during the trial phase of the EU ETS from 2005 to 2007. The country-specific long-run elasticities of petrol prices with respect to the EUA prices are between 0.01 and 0.09. Given that these elasticities are of the same order of magnitude as the share of carbon allowances costs in total production costs in the refining industry, the estimates are consistent with the full pass-through potential. The variance decomposition analysis shows furthermore that a significant fraction of petrol price changes in Austria, Germany, France and Spain can be explained by changes in allowances prices (between 10% and 20%). © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Gavard C.,Center for European Economic Research
Energy Policy | Year: 2016

This paper aims at characterizing the conditions of wind power deployment in order to infer a carbon price level that would provide wind power with comparable advantage over fossil fuel technologies as effective wind support policies. The analysis is conducted on Denmark after the electricity market liberalization. Probit and tobit techniques are employed to take account of a potential threshold effect. I find that the level and type of the support policy are the dominant drivers of deployment. A feed-in tariff significantly brings more wind power in than a premium policy. The additional capacity installed monthly increases by more than 1. MW for each additional €/MWh of support. This is compared to the effect of the electricity price, investment cost, interest rate and general economic activity. If the policy is a premium, I find that 23€/MWh of support in addition to electricity price is needed to observe the connection of new turbines to the grid with a 0.5 probability. I convert this support level into a carbon price of 27€/ton if wind power competes with coal, and 48€/t if it competes with gas. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd.

Achtnicht M.,Center for European Economic Research
Ecological Economics | Year: 2011

Residential buildings strongly contribute to global CO2 emissions due to the high energy demand for electricity and heating, particularly in industrialised countries. Within the EU, decentralised heat generation is of particular relevance for future climate policy, as its emissions are not covered by the EU ETS. We conducted a choice experiment concerning energy retrofits for existing houses in Germany. In the experiment, the approximately 400 sampled house owners could either choose a modern heating system or an improved thermal insulation for their home. We used standard and mixed logit specifications to analyse the choice data. We found environmental benefits to have a significant impact on choices of heating systems. However, they played no role in terms of insulation choices. Based on the estimated mixed logit model, we further obtained willingness-to-pay (WTP) measures for CO2 savings. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

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