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An Analysis of Decoupling and Influencing Factors of Carbon Emissions from the Transportation Sector in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Area, China

Xiaoping Zhu () and Rongrong Li ()
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Xiaoping Zhu: School of Economic & Management, China University of Petroleum (Huadong), No. 66 West Changjiang Road, Qingdao 266580, China
Rongrong Li: School of Economic & Management, China University of Petroleum (Huadong), No. 66 West Changjiang Road, Qingdao 266580, China

Sustainability, 2017, vol. 9, issue 5, 1-19

Abstract: The transport sector is the major green-house gas emitter and most rapidly growing sector in terms of consuming energy in China. Understanding the driving forces behind carbon emission is a prerequisite for reducing carbon emissions and finding a balance between economic growth and carbon emissions. The purpose of this paper is to identify the impact of the factors which influence the level of carbon emissions from the transportation sector in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei (BTH) area, China, using decomposition model, combined with a decoupling elasticity index. The results of our study indicate that: (1) changes in the level of carbon emissions from the transportation sector are not always synchronized with changes in economic growth. (2) The decoupling state between the carbon emissions and economic growth of Tianjin and Beijing can be roughly divided into two phases. The first phase was during the 2005 to 2009 period, when the decoupling state was pessimistic. The second phase was from 2009 to 2013, when the decoupling state became better overall and was mainly dominated by weak decoupling. Conversely, the decoupling state of Hebei was mainly weak during this period. (3) Economic growth and population size play positive roles in increasing the levels of transportation-related carbon emissions in BTH. However, the energy structure is a negative force. The effect of energy intensity always plays a negative role in Tianjin and Hebei, but positive in Beijing. The industrial structure effect shows a fluctuating trend, but the cumulative effect value is negative, and negative interaction is prominent. Finally, this paper gives some suggestions on how to develop low-carbon transport in BTH area.

Keywords: decoupling analysis; transportation sector; Logarithmic Mean Divisia Index Method; influencing factors; Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei (BTH) area (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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