Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2012, Vol. 67 ›› Issue (10): 1327-1338.doi: 10.11821/xb201210004

Previous Articles     Next Articles

Regional Carbon Footprint and Interregional Transfer of Carbon Emissions in China

SHI Minjun1,2, WANG Yan1,2,3, ZHANG Zhuoying1,2, ZHOU Xin4   

  1. 1. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China;
    2. Research Center on Fictitious Economy and Data Science, CAS, Beijing 100190, China;
    3. China Communication University, Beijing 100024, China;
    4. Japan Institute of Global Environmental Strategy
  • Received:2011-09-20 Revised:2012-04-17 Online:2012-10-20 Published:2012-10-20
  • Supported by:

    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.71173112; No.70921061

Abstract: Obligation assignment of carbon emission reduction needs to evaluate carbon emission charge by taking into account interregional transfer of carbon emissions. Carbon footprint, as a concept of carbon emission measurement, can evaluate life cycle carbon emissions of production and service to meet final demand. It should include direct carbon emissions caused by fossil energy as well as indirect carbon emissions induced by intermediate products production. This paper aims to estimate carbon footprint of each province and inter-provincial transfer of carbon emissions in China based on an input-output approach and China IRIO 2002 database. The results indicate there are significant differences of carbon footprint and per capita carbon footprint among provinces in China. The provinces with higher carbon footprint, mainly located in northern China, have large economic scale. The provinces with high per capita carbon footprint include developed metropolitan regions and energy-rich regions with a high proportion of energy intensive sectors. Interregional transfer of carbon emissions has emerged from energy-rich regions with a high proportion of energy intensive sectors to developed coastal regions and developing regions with incomplete industrial systems. The results imply developed coastal regions should bear more obligation of carbon emission reduction. As a significant amount of carbon emissions of energy-rich regions with a high proportion of energy intensive sectors is induced by provision of energy intensive products for developed coastal regions and developing regions with incomplete industrial systems, interregional transfer of carbon emissions should be taken into account for regional obligation assignment of carbon emission reduction. It can be considered to reduce obligation of carbon emission reduction for those energy-rich regions with a high proportion of energy intensive sectors. Otherwise, a compensation mechanism should be considered for developed coastal provinces to provide financial and technological aid to energy-rich regions with a high proportion of energy intensive sectors for improvement of energy use efficiency and reduction of carbon emissions.

Key words: regional carbon footprint, interregional transfer of carbon emissions, obligation assignment of carbon emission reduction, China IRIO-2002