In the last 40 years, considerable progress in efficiency improvements has been achieved. Nevertheless, the total energy consumption in Germany has not been decreasing accordingly. So-called
rebound effects work in such ways that the theoretical technical saving potential is not achieved, since direct and indirect effects of the efficiency improvement can lead to higher energy
The central research question of the ReCap project is which macroeconomic effects result from such rebounds, especially because energy as a production factor has been playing a key role for economic growth. Against this background, the project examines the relation between macroeconomic rebound effects and economic growth.
One speaks about rebound effects, when increases in energy efficiency do not result in the expected decrease in energy consumption or even lead to increases in energy consumption. Increases in energy efficiency gained from new technologies are considered essential to reduce energy consumption. However, rebound effects question the effectiveness of such measures.
The project team systematizes the mechanisms of micro, meso and macroeconomic rebound effects and drivers of economic growth. The identified drivers will be analysed through statistical and econometric methods and focusing on several sectors in more detail such the chemical industry or the mechanical engineering industry. Based on this findings, we plan to develop a set of policy measures, which have the potential to mitigate rebound effects.
The project is a collaboration between the Institute for Ecological Economy Research (IÖW), the Institute of Economic Structures Research (GWS) and the University of Göttingen (chair of statistics).
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