In November 2021, the project partners Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO), Energy Economics Group - TU Wien, e-think and BOKU (Centre for Global Change and Sustainability and Institute for Transport Studies) started the three and a half year research project Transfair-AT. The aim of the project is to explore the basis for a socially just, climate-neutral transformation of the building and mobility sector.
The Austrian government strives for achieving greenhouse gas neutrality in the transport and the buildings sector by 2040. Achieving a complete decarbonisation within such a short period of time will be challenging for both sectors: In the transport sector the trend of rising emissions must be reversed; in the building sector in particular the building stock must be thermally improved and heating systems must completely shift towards renewable energy sources.
The introduction of policy instruments to decarbonise the housing and mobility sectors will entail different effects for different household groups depending on several (socio-economic) aspects. The (presumed) regressivity of policy instruments (most notably fiscal measures) in these areas very often impedes an evidence-based discussion on the political level and is used as an argument against the implementation of respective measures, especially in times of low economic development as during the current Covid-19 crisis.
By linking a macroeconomic model with a vehicle choice model, a transport demand model and a building stock model, in TransFair-AT we will analyse policy scenarios achieving a full decarbonisation of housing and mobility in Austria by 2040. We will assess the emission impacts as well as the macroeconomic and distributional effects of policy sets on different household types and develop measures to compensate vulnerable groups ensuring that the disposable income of disadvantaged household groups is not reduced.
More detailed information on the progress of the project can be found on the project homepage: https://transfair.wifo.ac.at/index.htm
This project is funded by the Klima- und Energiefonds and carried out within the Austrian Climate Research Programme (ACRP).