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Sustainability 2015, 7(8), 10098-10114; doi:10.3390/su70810098

Carbon Footprints and Embodied Carbon Flows Analysis for China’s Eight Regions: A New Perspective for Mitigation Solutions

1
School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
2
The Administrative Center for China's Agenda 21, Beijing 100875, China
3
Joint Center for Global Change Studies (JCGCS), Beijing 100084, China
4
Ministry of Education Key Laboratory for Earth System Modeling and Center for Earth System Science, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Weidong Huang
Received: 30 April 2015 / Revised: 17 July 2015 / Accepted: 22 July 2015 / Published: 28 July 2015
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2530 KB, uploaded 28 July 2015]   |  

Abstract

Carbon footprints have been widely employed as an indicator for total carbon dioxide released by human activities. In this paper, we implemented a multi-regional input-output framework to evaluate the carbon footprints and embodied carbon flows for the eight regions of China from consumption-based perspective. It is found that the construction, electricity/stream supply, and machine manufacturing rank as the top sectors with the largest total carbon emissions. The construction sector alone accounts for 20%–50% of the national emissions. Besides the sectoral carbon footprints, regional footprints and their differences in carbon emissions were also observed. The middle region had the largest total carbon footprints, 1188 million ton, while the capital region ranked the first for its per capita carbon footprint, 7.77 ton/person. In regard to the embodied carbon flows within China, the study detected that the embodied carbon flows take up about 41% of the total carbon footprints of the nation. The northwest region and the eastern coast region are found to be the largest net embodied carbon exporter and importer, respectively. Further investigation revealed significant differences between production-based and consumption-based carbon emissions, both at sectoral and total amounts. Results of this paper can provide specific information to policies on sectoral and regional carbon emission reduction. View Full-Text
Keywords: carbon footprints; multi-regional input-output model; embodied carbon; regional differences; construction; sectoral emissions carbon footprints; multi-regional input-output model; embodied carbon; regional differences; construction; sectoral emissions
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Xie, X.; Cai, W.; Jiang, Y.; Zeng, W. Carbon Footprints and Embodied Carbon Flows Analysis for China’s Eight Regions: A New Perspective for Mitigation Solutions. Sustainability 2015, 7, 10098-10114.

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