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Key sectors in carbon footprint responsibility at the city level: a case study of Beijing

Jing Tian (Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research (CEEP), Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China)
Julio Lumbreras (Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, Madrid, Spain)
Celio Andrade (Universidade Federal da Bahia, Salvador, Brazil)
Hua Liao (Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research (CEEP), Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China)

International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management

ISSN: 1756-8692

Article publication date: 19 September 2017

Issue publication date: 29 September 2017

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to identify key sectors in carbon footprint responsibility, an introduced concept depicting CO2 responsibilities allocated through the supply chain containing sectoral activities and interactions. In detail, various key sectors could be identified according to comparative advantages in trade, sectoral linkage and sectoral synergy within the supply chain.

Design/methodology/approach

A semi-closed input–output model is used to make the household income–expenditure relationship endogenous through the supply chain where sectoral CO2 emissions are calculated, and the production-based responsibility (PR) principle is evaluated. Thus, according to “carbon footprint responsibility”, modified hypothetical extraction method is applied to decompose sectoral CO2 in terms of comparative advantages in trade, sectoral linkage and synergy. Finally, key sectors are identified via sectoral shares and associated decompositions in carbon footprint responsibility.

Findings

Compared to 2005, in 2012, the PR principle failed to track sectoral CO2 flow, and embodied CO2 in import and interprovincial export increased, with manufacturing contributing the most; manufacturing should take more carbon responsibilities in the internal linkage, and tertiary sectors in the net forward and backward linkage, with sectors enjoying low carbonization in the mixed linkage; inward net CO2 flows of manufacturing and service sectors were more complicated than their outward ones in terms of involved sectors and economic drivers; and residential effects on CO2 emissions of traditional sectors increased, urban effects remained larger than rural ones and manufacturing and tertiary sectors received the largest residential effects.

Originality/value

The value of this paper is as follows: the household income–expenditure relationship got endogenous in intermediate supply and demand, corresponding to the rapid urbanization in megacities; key sectors were observed to change flexibly according to real sectoral activities and interaction; and the evaluation of the PR principle was completed ahead of using a certain CO2 accounting principle at the city level.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

We thank the financial supports from the China's National Key R&D Program (2016YFA0602603, 2016YFA0602801), National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 71322306, 71273027, 71521002, 71673026). The views expressed in this paper are solely authors’ own and do not necessarily reflect the views of the supporting agencies and authors’ affiliations.

Citation

Tian, J., Lumbreras, J., Andrade, C. and Liao, H. (2017), "Key sectors in carbon footprint responsibility at the city level: a case study of Beijing", International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, Vol. 9 No. 6, pp. 749-776. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCCSM-01-2017-0009

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited