A comparison of carbon dioxide (CO2) emission trends among provinces in China

Kerui Du, Chunping Xie*, Xiaoling Ouyang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)
394 Downloads (Pure)


As the world leader in CO2emissions, China is a key focus for climate change mitigation. In this paper, we conducted a cross-province comparison of CO2emission trends in China from 2006 to 2012. We determined effects of CO2emission factor (EMF), energy mix change (EMX), potential energy intensity change (PEI), industrial structure (STR), economic activity (EAT), technological change (BPC) and energy efficiency change (EC) as underlying forces of CO2emission changes with production-based decomposition. Compared to other production-theory decomposition analyses (PDA), the method used in this paper can overcome the weakness of PDA on the measurement of structural changes and energy mix effect. The results provided strong evidence that EAT is the main driver behind rising emissions, while changes in PEI, EMX and EC have led to CO2emission reductions in most provinces/municipalities in China. In particular, we introduced the global benchmark technology to establish the relationship between CO2emissions and energy use technology. The potential CO2reductions in China were further measured under the scenarios of contemporaneous technology and global technology. The principal empirical implication is that the promotion of energy conservation technology and reductions in inter-regional technological disparity would be effective in reducing CO2emissions in technically inefficient regions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-25
Number of pages7
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jan 2017


  • Data envelopment analysis
  • Decomposition
  • Production-theory decomposition analysis
  • Shephard distance function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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