A carbon emission trading system (ETS) is an effective market mechanism for promoting the reduction of global greenhouse gas emissions and achieving sustainable development between the economy and the environment. To analyze the emissions reduction effect and economic effect of China’s ETS and further discuss the mechanisms of economic development differences and industrial development differences on the final effect of the policy, this study adopts the propensity score matching-difference in differences method and triple difference method. The empirical results show the following: (1) The ETS can simultaneously achieve both the emissions reduction effect and economic effect when key control variables are included. (2) The population, carbon emissions intensity and per capita GDP have significant positive impacts on carbon emissions; the environmental pollution control intensity, research structure, and research intensity have negative impacts on carbon emissions; and the capita stock, employment, and energy consumption have significant positive economic effects. (3) The ETS has a stronger inhibitory effect on the provinces with higher levels of economic and service development compared to the provinces with lower levels of economic and service development. In contrast, the policy has a weaker inhibitory effect on provinces with higher levels of industrial and construction development compared with the lower level provinces.
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