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The rebound effect in road transport: A meta-analysis of empirical studies

Alexandros Dimitropoulos, Walid Oueslati () and Christina Sintek

Energy Economics, 2018, vol. 75, issue C, 163-179

Abstract: The rebound effect is the phenomenon underlying the disproportionality between energy efficiency improvements and observed energy savings. In road transport, the effect reveals the extent to which energy savings from improved fuel efficiency are forgone due to additional car travel. We present a meta-analysis of 74 primary studies containing 1120 estimates of the direct rebound effect in road transport to evaluate its magnitude and identify its determinants. We find that the short-run rebound effect is, on average, about 10–12%, whereas the long-run effect about 26–29%. However, variation of estimates is large and can mainly be explained by differences in the time horizon considered, the elasticity measure used, and the type of data and econometric approach employed in primary studies. We also find that the rebound effect is declining over time and that lower per capita incomes, higher gasoline prices and higher population density are associated with larger rebound effects.

Keywords: Rebound effect; Road transport; Fuel efficiency; Gasoline price; Meta-analysis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D12 Q41 Q48 Q58 R41 R48 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Working Paper: The Rebound Effect in Road Transport: A Meta-analysis of Empirical Studies (2016) Downloads
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