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Size distribution of national CO2 emissions

Sherzod Akhundjanov (), Stephen Devadoss and Jeff Luckstead ()

Energy Economics, 2017, vol. 66, issue C, 182-193

Abstract: We examine the size distribution of national carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions on a sample of 210 countries and territories for the period 2000–2010. We employ lognormal, double Pareto-lognormal, lognormal-upper tail Pareto, and Pareto tails-lognormal distributions to estimate CO2 size distribution. The analysis demonstrates that the lognormal-Pareto composite distributions generally fit the size distribution of CO2 emissions better than the lognormal distribution. The parametric analysis reveals that the upper-tail of CO2 emissions is characterized by Zipf's law. The power law in the upper-tail implies that large countries emit much of the CO2. When controlling for population, Zipf's law no longer holds, but per capita CO2 emissions still exhibit a strong Pareto upper tail.

Keywords: CO2 emission; Pareto; Size distribution; Zipf's law (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C13 C46 Q54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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DOI: 10.1016/j.eneco.2017.06.012

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