Robbie Andrew

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More than half of China's CO2 emissions are from micro, small and medium-sized enterprises


To date, the burden of CO2 emissions reductions has been largely confined to large enterprises in China. Using new data with firm ownership and size information included, we show that micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) produced 53% of China's CO2 emissions in 2010. Detailed supply-chain analysis reveals that final demand for products made downstream by domestic-private MSMEs, along with exports made downstream by foreign-owned MSMEs, are the main drivers of China's CO2 emissions. Most of these emissions occur upstream in the electricity and heat sector, which is mainly controlled by large, state-owned enterprises with the highest carbon intensity, and the non-metallic mineral sector, which consists of a very large number of domestic-private MSMEs with lower levels of enforcement of emissions regulations. Overall, MSMEs induced 65% of China's CO2 emissions through their supply chains. Our conclusion is that understanding the role of firm size for China is important in developing emissions reduction policies: given the very high per-enterprise overhead of emissions trading systems, and the abundance of MSMEs, our results clearly favour taxation.

Spatial spillover effects within China

Just as with international trade, trade within China can drive regional emissions. Here Meng and colleagues analyse the spatial spillover effects between regions in China.Learn more »

How much Chinese coal?

China’s coal consumption grew enormously through the 2000s, leading to rapid growth in emissions of CO2. But how much did they grow? Uncertainty around China’s coal consumption data persist, and Jan Ivar Korsbakken and colleagues present the latest.Learn more »

A synthesis of carbon in international trade

In this comprehensive and up-to-date overview of the analysis of carbon embodied in international trade, Glen Peters and colleagues bring together treatments of some of the key issues, and introduce important new analyses. Learn more »

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