Telework: Urban Form, Energy Consumption, and Greenhouse Gas Implications

22 Pages Posted: 14 May 2020

See all articles by William D. Larson

William D. Larson

Federal Housing Finance Agency

Weihua Zhao

University of Louisville - College of Business - Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: April 2017

Abstract

A primary motivation of telework policy is to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Using a numerical simulation of the standard urban model, we show telework causes sprawl, calling into question the idea that telework decreases energy consumption. Overall effects depend on wage changes due to telework, land‐use regulation such as height limits or greenbelts, and the telework participation rate. While energy consumption increases in some scenarios, emissions may fall due to changes in the energy mix between gasoline and other sources.

JEL Classification: R11, R28, C60

Suggested Citation

Larson, William D. and Zhao, Weihua, Telework: Urban Form, Energy Consumption, and Greenhouse Gas Implications (April 2017). Economic Inquiry, Vol. 55, Issue 2, pp. 714-735, 2017, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3596356 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecin.12399

William D. Larson (Contact Author)

Federal Housing Finance Agency ( email )

400 7th Street SW
Washington, DC 20552
United States

Weihua Zhao

University of Louisville - College of Business - Department of Economics ( email )

Louisville, KY 40292
United States

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