Consumers and measures to reduce energy consumption (KONSENS)

KONSENS shows the energy- and CO2-reduction potential that can be reached by consumer-oriented policy measures, but also looks at their effectiveness and social implications. In order to conduct this analysis, the integrated environment-energy-economy model is used and extended by different types of households.

Private households possess a huge unused potential for energy reductions (and thus for climate protection), which could be tapped by gains in energy efficiency, behavioural changes, and the extended use of low-emission energy forms. So far, the focus of energy policy has been on businesses rather than private households which where only partly captured by direct policy measures. In order to reach the goals of national and international climate policies, the current political and scientific discussion increasingly looks at measures which aim to reduce private energy consumption.

This project contributes to these endeavours by analysing the energy- and CO2-reduction potentials that can be reached by consumer-oriented policy measures and their economic and social implications. The following energy related policy measures will be analysed with regard to their energy efficiency as well as their social impacts on different population groups: a CO2-card for all citizens (with a focus on transport and heating), energy taxation reforms (a CO2 tax for households will be compared with the CO2 card; increase in the petroleum tax), and a modification of the current subsidies for the construction and renovationof houses (shift of focus on to renovation rather than on new buildings).

The analysis will be conducted with the help of an integrated environment-energy-economy model called This model currently consists of an economy model (including an input-output-model, a labour market model, a model of macroeconomic accounting), an energy model, a material model, a housing model, and a model for external trade. Private households have so far beenincluded in the form of a single average Austrian household, which differentiates between 37 categories of consumption. In order to analyse the social and distributional impacts of the different policy measures, different types of households will now be implemented through the model.

The modelling will result in quantitative estimates for the explored indicators (economic growth, CO2-emissions, energy consumption, employment, etc.) and will show the various effects of the policy measures on the implemented household types. Following this, socially negative impacts, trade-offs , and possible compensatory measures can be identified in order to be able to develop political strategies taking into account their social, economic, and ecological impacts.

Stakeholders and experts are invited to participate in the project by taking part in several workshops. Including their knowledge will improve the quality of the modelling and help to increase the identification of the stakeholders with the project results. This will increase the chances for the implementation of the main results. Special importance will be given to the public and scientific dissemination of the results.

[date] News

[paper] Publication

[person] Contact

[website] Project website

[person] Project partners

  • GWS Gesellschaft für Wirtschaftliche Strukturforschung mbH (GWS), Osnabrück, Deutschland

[person] Client

  • Neue Energien 2020 (Climate- and Energy fund)

[projects] Related projects

[book_open] Related themes

[duration] Project duration

  • October 2009 – May 2011

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