To assess the impact individual actors can have on climate change, I define the marginal impact of emission reductions as the expected change in climate change outcomes due to reducing overall anthropogenic emissions by 1 tCO₂. Using climate models, I estimate the marginal impact for glacier ice melting, life expectancy and vegetation change. The marginal impact is continuous in overall emissions and, for most outcomes, other’s reductions decrease the marginal impact (strategic substitutability). Using online surveys, I find that subjects underestimate the marginal impact and believe in strategic complementarity as well as discontinuities at known temperature thresholds. Informing subjects about the climate science findings increases their intentions to reduce own emissions and real donations to mitigate overall emissions. The findings are consistent with a simple model of threshold thinking.
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Climate change mitigation
“The Marginal Impact of Emission Reductions”
“Demand Responses to Pricing Food Items’ Environmental Externalities: Evidence from a Nationwide Field Experiment” (with Hunt Allcott, Amelie Michalke and Tobias Gaukler)
“Vegetarian*ism: Evidence from 200 Million Home Deliveries” (with Ruben Durante and Milan Quentel)
“Specification analysis for technology use and teenager well-being: statistical validity and a Bayesian proposal” (with David Rossell), Journal of the Royal Statistical Society: Series C (Applied Statistics) 71 (5): 1330–55, 2022.
“Altruism under Endowment-Source Uncertainty”
“Gauging the Gravity of the Situation: The Use and Abuse of Expertise in Estimating the Economic Costs of Brexit” (with Colin Hay), MaxPo Discussion Paper 21/3.
“Blue Mission Tracking: Real-Time Location of UN Peacekeepers” (with Walter Dorn), International Peacekeeping 22(5): 545-64, 2015.