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Resources 2014, 3(1), 106-122;

Revisiting Rebound Effects from Material Resource Use. Indications for Germany Considering Social Heterogeneity

Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy, Doeppersberg 19, Wuppertal D-42103, Germany
Received: 7 November 2013 / Revised: 7 January 2014 / Accepted: 20 January 2014 / Published: 10 February 2014
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In contrast to the original investigation by William Stanley Jevons, compensations of energy savings due to improved energy efficiency are mostly analyzed by providing energy consumption or greenhouse gas emissions. In support of a sustainable resource management, this paper analyzes so-called rebound effects based on resource use. Material flows and associated expenditures by households allow for calculating resource intensities and marginal propensities to consume. Marginal propensities to consume are estimated from data of the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) in order to account for indirect rebound effects for food, housing and mobility. Resource intensities are estimated in terms of total material requirements per household final consumption expenditures along the Classification of Individual Consumption according to Purpose (COICOP). Eventually, rebound effects are indicated on the basis of published saving scenarios in resource and energy demand for Germany. In sum, compensations due to rebound effects are lowest for food while the highest compensations are induced for mobility. This is foremost the result of a relatively high resource intensity of food and a relatively low resource intensity in mobility. Findings are provided by giving various propensity scenarios in order to cope with income differences in Germany. The author concludes that policies on resource conservation need to reconsider rebound effects under the aspect of social heterogeneity. View Full-Text
Keywords: rebound effect; total material requirement; material footprint; re-spending rebound effect; total material requirement; material footprint; re-spending

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Buhl, J. Revisiting Rebound Effects from Material Resource Use. Indications for Germany Considering Social Heterogeneity. Resources 2014, 3, 106-122.

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