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The Relationship between Tourism, Carbon Dioxide Emissions, and Economic Growth in the Yangtze River Delta, China

Lingling Chen (), Brijesh Thapa () and Wei Yan ()
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Lingling Chen: Department of Tourism Management, Jinling Institute of Technology, Nanjing 210038, China
Brijesh Thapa: Department of Tourism, Recreation & Sport Management, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-8208, USA
Wei Yan: Department of Tourism Management, Jinling Institute of Technology, Nanjing 210038, China

Sustainability, 2018, vol. 10, issue 7, 1-20

Abstract: Quantifying the dynamics of regional tourism in a low-carbon economy context is a pivotal issue to develop energy policies, and to decompose the national carbon abatement. Based on a case study approach for the Yangtze River Delta (YRD), China, the relationship between tourism, carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions, and economic growth were examined. The bottom-up approach, decoupling analysis, and Logarithmic Mean Divisia Index (LMDI) decomposition were integrated and applied. The results from 2001 to 2015 indicated that tourism-induced energy consumption and CO 2 emissions in YRD increased from 896.90 × 10 8 MJ to 3207.40 × 10 8 MJ, and 673.55 × 10 4 t to 2152.27 × 10 4 t, respectively. Tourism-related transport from Shanghai was the major contributor towards emissions. The decoupling relation between CO 2 emissions and economic growth, in general, were desirable in YRD’s tourism, except in 2004. However, the situation in Shanghai was complicated. Additionally, industry size and expenditure size effect were principal factors to promote carbon emissions growth, whereas energy intensity, spatial structure, and sectorial structure had negative effects. Key issues for policymakers have been highlighted and discussed.

Keywords: low-carbon tourism; energy; CO 2; decoupling; LMDI decomposition (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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