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Impacts of shifting China's final energy consumption to electricity on CO2 emission reduction

Weigang Zhao (), Yunfei Cao, Bo Miao, Ke Wang () and Yi-Ming Wei ()

Energy Economics, 2018, vol. 71, issue C, 359-369

Abstract: Electrification is advocated by both academics and the Chinese government to control air pollution and promote productivity. However, the problem remains to be solved of how to achieve the trade-off between reducing CO2 emissions and maintaining economic growth when switching from various fuels to electricity under the policy support. In view of this, after analyzing the effects of exogenous shocks in various fuel demands based on impulse response functions of several vector autoregression models, this paper measures the current and long-term impacts of electrification on GDP and CO2 emissions. Finally, some typical cases of replacement of fossil-fueled appliances by electrical counterparts encouraged by the government are assessed. The main findings are: (1) Almost all of the exogenous shocks in fuel demands have positive effects on both GDP and CO2 emissions, while the gas shock has a slightly negative effect on GDP; (2) Carbon intensity decreases and even CO2 emission reductions with increased GDP are potentially achieved, in both current and permanent periods, for coal-electricity and oil-electricity switching, while gas-electricity switching is not a wise choice in view of CO2 emission reduction in the long run; (3) The alternative electric appliances for electrification have very different impacts on CO2 emission reduction.

Keywords: Fuel-switching; Inter-fuel substitution; Electrification; CO2 emissions; Economic growth (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C32 O13 Q42 Q43 Q48 Q54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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