The Rebound Effect: An Assessment of the Evidence for Economy-wide Energy Savings from Improved Energy Efficiency

01 Oct 2007

This Research Report analyses the nature, operation and importance of rebound effects and provides a comprehensive review of the available evidence on this topic, together with closely related issues, such as the link between energy consumption and economic growth. It assesses the strengths and weaknesses of the evidence base, clarifies the underlying disputes and highlights the implications for energy and climate policy.

The key message is that promoting energy efficiency remains an effective way of reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions. But more explicit treatment of rebound effects is needed to assess the contribution that energy efficiency can realistically make.