No SDES-2017-2
Title Public acceptance of environmentally friendly electric heating in rural Beijing
Author Zhang Jingchao, Koji Kotani and Tatsuyoshi Saijo
Abstract China has long suffered from severe haze pollution due to coal consumption in rural areas. One possible solution is the promotion of a new electric heating system called "low temperature air source heat pump (LTHP) technology." This paper explores the possibility that the public will accept the LTHP for electric heating. To this end, we elicit people's willingness to adopt (WTA) and willingness to pay (WTP) for the LTHP technology and sociodemographic and perception information by conducting field surveys of 579 households and empirically characterize the determinants of public acceptance. The analysis reveals that income, science literacy and local environmental concern positively affect WTA and WTP, while global environmental concern does not show any significance. Contrary to our initial expectation, people in mountainous areas express the highest WTA and WTP, followed by those in hilly and plains areas. Overall, these findings suggest that efforts to promote the technology could begin in mountainous areas and move to hilly and then to plains areas, thereby advancing public education on local environmental concerns and science literacy. Adopting such a plan has the potential to successfully promote the electric heating system in the lowest-cost manner and ensure a cleaner environment through the shift from coal to electricity in rural Beijing.
Revised version published in Energy Policy