2 thoughts on “The Energy Rebound Battle

  1. Balazs Fekete

    The Fiat 500 should serve as the symbol of the rebound effect. The original 500 had a 500 cc engine (hence the 500) that generated 23 horse power to move the car that weighted 600 kg. The new one is exactly twice as heavy, comes with minimum 1.4 l engine and has the same 5l/100km (42mpg) gas mileage. All the improvements in the efficiency of the gasoline engine went into making the car faster, more comfortable and crash resistant.

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  2. Daniel Sleator

    I have a couple of observations. This article does not address the efficacy of a carbon tax in reducing fossil fuel consumption. I’m convinced that the “fee and dividend” system proposed by Citizens Climate Lobby will be tremendously effective at doing this. The fact (as explained in this article) that more efficient technologies in and of themselves might not reduce fossil fuel consumption should not be much of a concern, because we can apply this much more powerful and effective tool.

    In my state we can switch to green electricity at a slightly higher cost. I’ve done this. But this got me thinking of what the consequences of my choice might be. This could cause the cost of non-green electricity to go down slightly, which could in turn cause other people to be more cavalier about their energy use (e.g. not upgrade to low energy bulbs, etc). So in the end my switching over to renewable energy could result in zero net reduction in the amount of fossil fuels burned for electricity.

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