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How Ambitious are China and India’s Emissions Intensity Targets?

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  • Stern, David I.
  • Jotzo, Frank

Abstract

As part of the negotiating process for a post-Kyoto climate policy regime, several developing economies have announced carbon emission targets for 2020. China and India’s commitments are framed as emissions intensity reductions by 40 to 45 per cent and 20 to 25 per cent respectively between 2005 and 2020. But how feasible are these proposed emissions intensity reductions, and how do they compare with the targeted reductions in the United States and the European Union? In this research report we use a stochastic frontier model to explain the variation in countries’ energy intensities. We use the model to produce emissions projections for China and India under a number of scenarios that consider various rates of technological change and changes in the share of non-fossil energy. We find that China is likely to need to adopt ambitious carbon mitigation policies in order to achieve its stated target, and that its targeted reductions in emissions intensity are on par with those implicit in the United States and European Union targets. India’s target is less ambitious and might be met with only limited or even no dedicated mitigation policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Stern, David I. & Jotzo, Frank, 2010. "How Ambitious are China and India’s Emissions Intensity Targets?," Research Reports 94947, Australian National University, Environmental Economics Research Hub.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eerhrr:94947
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ross Garnaut & Stephen Howes & Frank Jotzo & Peter Sheehan, 2008. "Emissions in the Platinum Age: the implications of rapid development for climate-change mitigation," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(2), pages 377-401, Summer.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jotzo, Frank, 2010. "Comparing the Copenhagen emissions targets," Research Reports 107577, Australian National University, Environmental Economics Research Hub.
    2. Stern, David I. & Pezzey, John C. V. & Lambie, N. Ross, 2011. "Where in the World is it Cheapest to Cut Carbon Emissions? Ranking Countries by Total and Marginal Cost of Abatement," Working Papers 249534, Australian National University, Centre for Climate Economics & Policy.
    3. Ni, Jinlan & Wei, Chu & Du, Limin, 2015. "Revealing the political decision toward Chinese carbon abatement: Based on equity and efficiency criteria," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 609-621.
    4. Fei Teng & Frank Jotzo, 2014. "Reaping the Economic Benefits of Decarbonization for China," China & World Economy, Institute of World Economics and Politics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, vol. 22(5), pages 37-54, September.
    5. Stern, David I., 2014. "The Environmental Kuznets Curve: A Primer," Working Papers 249424, Australian National University, Centre for Climate Economics & Policy.
    6. Yuan, Jiahai & Xu, Yan & Zhang, Xingping & Hu, Zheng & Xu, Ming, 2014. "China's 2020 clean energy target: Consistency, pathways and policy implications," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 692-700.
    7. P. Shukla & Subash Dhar, 2011. "Climate agreements and India: aligning options and opportunities on a new track," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 229-243, September.
    8. Stern, David & Pezzey, John & Lambie, N., 2012. "Where in the world is it cheapest to cut carbon emissions?," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 56(3), September.
    9. Jotzo, Frank, 2013. "Emissions trading in China: Principles, design options and lessons from international practice," Working Papers 249405, Australian National University, Centre for Climate Economics & Policy.
    10. Shahiduzzaman, Md. & Alam, Khorshed, 2013. "Changes in energy efficiency in Australia: A decomposition of aggregate energy intensity using logarithmic mean Divisia approach," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 341-351.
    11. David I. Stern, 2017. "The environmental Kuznets curve after 25 years," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 19(1), pages 7-28, April.
    12. Zhu, Bangzhu & Wang, Kefan & Chevallier, Julien & Wang, Ping & Wei, Yi-Ming, 2015. "Can China achieve its carbon intensity target by 2020 while sustaining economic growth?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 209-216.
    13. Andersson, Fredrik N.G. & Karpestam, Peter, 2013. "CO2 emissions and economic activity: Short- and long-run economic determinants of scale, energy intensity and carbon intensity," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 1285-1294.
    14. repec:eee:eneeco:v:66:y:2017:i:c:p:17-26 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Zhang, Bo & Chen, G.Q., 2014. "Methane emissions in China 2007," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 886-902.
    16. Zhang, Bo & Chen, G.Q. & Li, J.S. & Tao, L., 2014. "Methane emissions of energy activities in China 1980–2007," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 11-21.
    17. Yuan, Jiahai & Hou, Yong & Xu, Ming, 2012. "China's 2020 carbon intensity target: Consistency, implementations, and policy implications," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 16(7), pages 4970-4981.
    18. Luken, Ralph A. & Piras, Stefano, 2011. "A critical overview of industrial energy decoupling programs in six developing countries in Asia," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 3869-3872, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    carbon emissions; climate change; developing countries; projections; Environmental Economics and Policy; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy; O13; Q54; Q56; Q58;

    JEL classification:

    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy

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