Trends in household demand and greenhouse gas footprints in Germany: Evidence from microdata of the last 20 years

March 23, 2023

Ecological Economics, Vol. 208, June 2023, 107757

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This paper quantifies changes in the trend of greenhouse gas footprints associated with household consumption covering a period of 20 years. We combine greenhouse gas emissions related to the supply chain (embedded) and consumption (direct) with households' consumption expenditures from the sample survey of income and expenditure (EVS), and present the first comprehensive study on trends in greenhouse gas footprints of German households. We find a decay in changes in GHG footprints as a response to increases in household expenditure over time. In addition, our estimated own-price elasticities for electricity and heating indicate an increasing demand response to higher energy prices. However, this does not translate to a clear decreasing trend in the total GHG footprint because of the role of changes in the demand of other commodities and changes in expenditure levels across years. Further, comparing results of the more advanced EASI demand system with those of the more widely used QUAIDS approach, we find sizable differences.