New Publication: A general explanation for environmental policy support: An example using carbon taxation approval in Germany
Available free of charge at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2023.102066
Gerdes, R., Bauske, E. & Kaiser, F. G. (2023). A general explanation for environmental policy support: An example using carbon taxation approval in Germany. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 90, 102066.
In democratic societies, public support is crucial for the success of climate change mitigation policies. In this article, we present a parsimonious explanation—grounded in the Campbell paradigm—for explicit approval of environmental policies based on two forces: (a) an individual's commitment to environmental protection (i.e., people's environmental attitudes) and (b) the figurative costs entailed by a specific policy. We tested this model with carbon tax variants and data from German samples from four different sociocultural conditions (Ntotal = 8,166). The results showed that only a minority (36%) were sufficiently committed to environmental protection to approve of a carbon tax regardless of its specific details. Even the most favorable tax level and use of revenue achieved an approval rate of only 48%. Regional differences and interactions among the carbon taxation specifications turned out to be negligible. Overall, our results corroborate the generalizability of the proposed environmental policy support model.
-Carbon tax approval originates in people's commitment to environmental protection.
-Policies' attributes (e.g., revenue use) control approval rates as costs and yields.
-Only 36% of people approve of carbon taxation irrespective of the specific details.
-Even the most favorable carbon tax variant achieved an approval rate of only 48%.
-More complex models do not necessarily lead to superior explanation or prediction.