Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

HUI Working Papers,
HUI Research

No 87: Out-of-Town Shopping and Its Induced CO2-Emissions

Kenneth Carling , Johan Håkansson () and Tao Jia
Additional contact information
Kenneth Carling: Dalarna university, Postal: School of Technology and Business Studies, SE-791 88 Falun, Sweden
Johan Håkansson: Dalarna university, Postal: School of Technology and Business Studies, SE-791 88 Falun, Sweden
Tao Jia: Wuhan University, Postal: School of Remote Sensing and Information Engineering, China

Abstract: Planning policies in several European countries have aimed at hindering the expansion of out-of-town shopping centers. One argument for this is concern for the increase in transport and a resulting increase in environmental externalities such as CO2-emissions. This concern is weakly founded in science as few studies have attempted to measure CO2-emissions of shopping trips as a function of the location of the shopping centers. In this paper we conduct a counter-factual analysis comparing downtown, edge-of-town and out-of-town shopping. In this comparison we use GPS to track 250 consumers over a time-span of two months in a Swedish region. The GPS-data enters the Oguchi’s formula to obtain shopping trip-specific CO2-emissions. We find that consumers’ out-of-town shopping would generate an excess of 60 per cent CO2-emissions whereas downtown and edge-of-town shopping centers are comparable.

Keywords: car-specific CO2-emissions; counter-factual; dense network; GPS tracking; regional shopping centers

JEL-codes: L81; Q51; R11

17 pages, April 24, 2013

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