Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Understanding the Driving Patterns of the Carbon Emissions in Transport Sector in China: A Panel Data Analysis and Zoning Effect

Version 1 : Received: 30 May 2018 / Approved: 30 May 2018 / Online: 30 May 2018 (16:16:35 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.


China’s transportation industry has made rapid progress, which has led to a mass of carbon emissions. However, it is still unclear how the carbon emission from transport sector is punctuated by shifts in underlying drivers. This paper aims to examine the process of China’s carbon emissions from transport sector as well as its major driving forces during the period of 2000 to 2015 at the provincial level. We firstly estimate the carbon emissions from transport sector at the provincial level based on the fuel and electricity consumption using a top-down method. We find that the carbon emission per capita is steadily increasing across the nation, especially in the provinces of Chongqing and Inner Mongolia. However, the carbon emission intensity is decreasing in most provinces of China, except in Yunnan, Qinghai, Chongqing, Zhejiang, Heilongjiang, Jilin, Inner Mongolia, Henan and Anhui. We then quantify the effect of socio-economic factors and their regional variations on the carbon emissions using panel data model. The results show that the development of secondary industry is the most significant variable in both the entire nation level and the regional level, while the effects of the other variables vary across regions. Among these factors, population density is the main motivator of the increasing carbon emissions per capita from transport sector for both the whole nation and the western region, whereas the consumption level per capita of residents and the development of tertiary industry are the primary drivers of per capita carbon emissions for the eastern and central region.


transportation; carbon emission; carbon intensity; panel data analysis; China


Engineering, Transportation Science and Technology

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