Main content area

Decoupling sectoral economic output from carbon emissions on city level: A comparative study of Beijing and Shanghai, China

Wang, Qiang, Zhao, Mingming, Li, Rongrong
Journal of cleaner production 2019 v.209 pp. 126-133
carbon, carbon dioxide, cities, energy, greenhouse gas emissions, industry, models, population growth, sustainable development, trade, China
Cities do play significant roles in tackling global environmental changes. Decoupling economic growth from environmental pressures is critical for global sustainable development, however, few studies pay attention to the decoupling analysis at city level. This paper conducts a comparative study of the decoupling performance of economic output from CO2 emissions between Beijing and Shanghai, the top two cities in China. In this paper, the decoupling trends and the decoupling effects are explored from a sectoral perspective, by combining the Tapio decoupling elasticity and the logarithmic mean Divisia index (LMDI) model. The results show that Beijing and Shanghai both experienced weak decoupling in construction, expansive negative decoupling in transport, expansive coupling in trade, and weak decoupling in others over the period 2000–2015. Moreover, agriculture appeared strong decoupling in Beijing, and recessive decoupling in Shanghai; industry showed strong decoupling in Beijing, and weak decoupling in Shanghai. The decoupling effects showed different magnitudes and patterns in industrial sectors between Beijing and Shanghai. Overall, per-capita GDP and population growth inhibited the decoupling, while energy intensity, industrial share, energy mix accelerated the decoupling process.