Carbon emission intensity embodied in trade and its driving factors from the perspective of global value chain

Abstract

As a global problem, climate warming has received widespread attention recently. With trade development and labor division deepening, there exist large differences in carbon emission intensity (CEI) embodied in different trade patterns. Assessing environmental costs of different trade patterns is the core issue for policy makers. We decompose the overall CEI embodied in trade into CEI embodied in final goods trade, domestic trade, traditional intermediate trade, and global value chain trade. Using global multi-region input-output table provided by the WIOD database, we calculate the CEI embodied in different trade patterns during 1995–2014. Further, we analyze the influencing factors of CEI embodied in different trade patterns. We find that CEI embodied in domestic trade is lower than that of international trade. All kinds of embodied CEI in developing countries are higher than that in developed countries. Furthermore, the driving factors of the overall embodied CEI, including domestic trade and international trade, are population, PGDP, energy intensity, and trade. The expansion of industrialization can effectively reduce the CEI embodied in trade of developing countries. The increase of PGDP and industrialization can effectively reduce the CEI embodied in trade related to global value chain and traditional intermediate trade, while only the increase of PGDP can effectively reduce the CEI embodied in domestic trade and final goods trade. Population can reduce the embodied CEI in trade related to global value chain and traditional intermediate trade of developed countries. Economic development can almost promote the reduction of the CEI embodied in all trade patterns. Although industrialization has insignificant impact on the CEI embodied in final goods trade of the developed countries, it can reduce such CEI of developing countries.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    http://www.wiod.org/

  2. 2.

    Data for 35 sectors are classified according to the International Standard Industrial Classification revision 3 (ISIC Rev. 3).

  3. 3.

    Data for 56 sectors are classified according to the International Standard Industrial Classification revision 4 (ISIC Rev. 4).

  4. 4.

    In order to compare the results and the reasonableness of the data, this article deletes Estonia (EST), Greece (GRC), Taiwan (TWN), and other countries (ROW) in WIOD. According to the national classification of World Economic Situation and Prospects 2018, we divided the remaining 37 countries into 8 developing countries and 29 developed countries. Among them, except for CHN, IND, IDN, RUS, BRA, KOR, MEX, and TUR, which belong to developing countries, the rest belong to developed countries.

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Funding

The authors are grateful for financial support from the General project of Hunan Social Science Achievement Review Committee (No. XSP20YBC083) and the Scientific Research Project of Hunan Provincial Education Department (No. 19B090).

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Correspondence to Cenjie Liu.

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Zhao, G., Liu, C. Carbon emission intensity embodied in trade and its driving factors from the perspective of global value chain. Environ Sci Pollut Res (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-09130-3

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Keywords

  • Global value chain; Embodied carbon emission intensity; Input-output method; STIRPAT model

JEL classifications

  • F18
  • Q54
  • Q56