Title: The distribution of household emissions and the supposed regressiveness of climate policy
Lecturer: Nicholas Bardsley
Date: Thursday, 23 March 2017
Venue: Z/023. ICTA-UAB
How households would be affected by carbon policies depends on the distribution of emissions. But some key purchases are infrequent, so we have limited information about this. We apply matching methods to recover the distribution of consumption rates of motor fuels. The top 20% of motorists are responsible for over 50% of the emissions. Such skewness means that a revenue neutral carbon policy for fuel could be very attractive from a social point of view. However, there could be a big difference between tax and cap versions of the policy. A tax could conceivably make emissions worse, as poorer households consume more from extra income than rich ones do.
Nicholas (Nick) Bardsley is a guest researcher in ICTA-UAB for the coming three months, working with Jeroen van den Bergh. Nick is Associate Professor of Behavioural and Ecological Economics in the School of Agriculture, Policy and Development, University of Reading, UK. He has worked extensively on experimental investigation of decision making, and related methodological issues. This has involved examining evidence against received theories of economic behaviour and testing alternatives, particularly ones positing collective rationality and norm-driven behaviour.
His recent research spans ecological and behavioural economics, for example using experimental methods to study household energy use, aiming for insight into rebound effects. His most recent research investigates food norms in schools, and social influences on environmental valuation data. He is program director for MSc Climate Change and Development at Reading.