The present study investigates the effects of energy-related technologies on economic performance at firm level. We distinguish
clearly between adoption and use of energy-related technologies (process innovation in the broad sense) and product innovation
in energy-related fields. We take into consideration four energy-related policy instruments (and expected demand for energy-related
new products and services). We investigate the possibility of indirect effects of policy on performance via adoption or innovation
by interacting adoption and innovation variables with policy instrument dummies. We test our hypotheses not only for the pooled
data but also separately for the three countries (Austria, Germany, Switzerland) that are taken into consideration in this
study. We find a positive direct effect of investment expenditures for energy-related technologies on labour productivity
– that measure intensity of adoption of energy-related technologies – and a positive indirect effect of energy taxes via investment
in energy-related technologies. Further, we find positive direct and indirect effects of regulation, standards and voluntary
agreements via the adoption of production-related technologies and for technologies for the generation of renewal energy sources.
We find neither direct nor indirect effects of the sales of innovative energy-related products – that measure product innovation
in energy-related products – on labour productivity. No differences among the three countries could be detected with respect
to investment in energy-related technologies and sales of innovative energy-related products. The indirect effects of regulation
and standards and voluntary agreements can be primarily traced back to German firms.
Study by: Centre for European Economic Research – Swiss Institute for Business Cycle Research – Austrian Institute of Economic Research
For a large sample of enterprises in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (the DACH region) we study the impact of policy instruments
such as energy-related taxes, subsidies, standards and negotiated agreements, or other regulations on the firm's ecological
and economic performance. To identify the causal linkages, we build a system of twelve equations, first tracking the impacts
of policy on the adoption of green energy technologies for distinct areas. In a second set of equations, we estimate the perceived
impacts of adoption on the firm's energy efficiency, carbon emissions and competitiveness. The results confirm a differentiated
pattern of channels through which policy can affect the firm's energy efficiency and carbon emissions, while having a neutral
impact on its competitiveness.
Martin Wörter, Tobias Stucki, Spyros Arvanitis, Christian Rammer, Michael Peneder