Researchers from the University of British Columbia have concluded that government subsidies that encourage people to drive hybrid cars have been unsuccessful in greatly reducing carbon emissions. The study showed that consumers who took advantage of the subsidies tended to move from fuel-efficient conventional cars to hybrids, not, as the subsidy intended, from gas guzzling SUVs. Lead author of the study Ambarish Chandra, of UBC’s Sauder School of Business, says the overall reduction in carbon emissions is “not great.” The study showed that hybrid vehicle purchases weren’t because of the subsidy, rather they were motivated because of environmental concerns. “So for the majority, rebates are not changing behavior. They are subsidizing planned purchases,” says Chandra.