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Ageing and private transport fuel expenditure: Do generations matter?

Rossella Bardazzi and Maria Pazienza ()

Energy Policy, 2018, vol. 117, issue C, 396-405

Abstract: An ageing population is generally associated with decreasing private transport-related energy demand. However, we hold that besides this pure age effect other cultural elements should be considered in order to understand and forecast energy-related choices. Individuals react to the pressure of several factors that define the concept of energy culture (Stephenson et al., 2015), among which are sociodemographic and economic transformations and changes in lifestyle and pro-environmental attitudes. In this paper, we analyse the use of fuels for private mobility in Italy. In our view, this case is particularly interesting because of the country's very high car and motorcycle ownership rates and the very fast ageing of its population. Because of this demographic shift, various generations coexist and a relevant share of the elderly population are still driving a car. We use several waves of the Italian Household Budget Survey to run a double-hurdle model augmented by age and cohort effects. According to our estimates, baby boomers exhibit a positive cohort effect, so that their transport fuel expenditure is significantly higher compared with younger generations. We interpret this result as a confirmation of evolving generational energy culture towards a sustainable transport system, speeding up the decarbonisation process.

Keywords: C24; D12; Q4; Private transport fuel consumption; Cohort effect; Energy culture; Double-hurdle model (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:117:y:2018:i:c:p:396-405