Have you ever wondered how much an average consumer would be willing to pay in order to reduce the carbon emissions from their car? A new survey released by the Transportation Research Institute at the University of Michigan answers a more specific version of this question: how much are drivers willing to pay for in-vehicle technologies that reduce carbon emissions?

The research institute conducted an online survey of 536 random participants to find out.

Researchers ultimately found that participants were willing to pay more for vehicles that use onboard technologies to reduce carbon emissions.

Research Institute Study

A survey conducted by the Transportation Research Institute at the University of Michigan found that drivers would be willing to pay about $100 for a 20% reduction in carbon emissions, and $250 for an 80% reduction. Credit: NAFTC.

In addition, participants were willing to sacrifice fuel economy and trunk space in order to reduce their carbon footprint.

In order to reduce CO2 emissions, drivers were willing to reduce their vehicle’s fuel economy by:

• 5% for a 20% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions
• 10% for a 80% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions

Drivers were also willing to accept loss in trunk space for lower carbon emissions:

• 10% loss in trunk space for a 20% reduction in emissions
• 16% loss in trunk space for an 80% reduction in emissions

The researchers also found that drivers’ beliefs about global warming influenced their receptiveness to carbon-capture technology on vehicles. “Among the surveyed drivers, acceptability of carbon-capture technology depended on driver belief that human activity is associated with global warming. Drivers that reported agreement with such statements were found to be more accepting of in-vehicle carbon capture technology: they were generally willing to pay more for this technology or to trade space and fuel economy for such technology.”

The study was conducted by John M. Sullivan, Michael Sivak, and Brandon Schoettle, and published in September 2013. For the full abstract of the study, called “A Survey of Driver Opinion Capture in Vehicles,” please visit http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/handle/2027.42/99754.




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