NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

From Green Users to Green Voters

Diego Comin, Johannes Rode

NBER Working Paper No. 19219
Issued in July 2013
NBER Program(s):   EEE   POL   PR

We study the effect of the diffusion of photovoltaic (PV) systems on the fraction of votes obtained by the German Green Party in federal elections. Using both regional and household survey data, we show that households that adopted PV systems became more supportive of the Green Party. We estimate that the adoption of domestic PV systems led to 25 percent of the increment in green votes between 1998 and 2009. Our results are robust to instrumentation using regional variation in solar radiation and past experience adopting non-green technologies. We conjecture that these results are driven by cognitive dissonance.

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This paper was revised on November 11, 2015

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w19219

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