IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Explanatory Factors Of Co2 Per Capita Emission Inequality In The European Union


  • Emilio Padilla

    () (Departament d'Economia Aplicada, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona)

  • Juan Antonio Duro

    () (Department of Economics and CREIP, Univ. Rovira i Virgili)


The design of European mitigation policies requires a detailed examination of the factors explaining the unequal emissions in the different countries. This research analyzes the evolution of inequality in CO2 per capita emissions in the European Union (EU-27) in the 1990–2006 period and its explanatory factors. For this purpose, we decompose the Theil index of inequality into the contributions of the different Kaya factors. The decomposition is also applied to the inequality between and within groups of countries (North Europe, South Europe, and East Europe). The analysis shows an important reduction in inequality, to a large extent due to the smaller differences between groups and because of the lower contribution of the energy intensity factor. The importance of the GDP per capita factor increases and becomes the main explanatory factor. However, within the different groups of countries the carbonization index appears to be the most relevant factor in explaining inequalities.

Suggested Citation

  • Emilio Padilla & Juan Antonio Duro, 2011. "Explanatory Factors Of Co2 Per Capita Emission Inequality In The European Union," Working Papers wpdea1107, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona.
  • Handle: RePEc:uab:wprdea:wpdea1107

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Vicent Alcántara Escolano & Emilio Padilla Rosa, 2005. "Análisis de las emisiones de CO2 y sus factores explicativos en las diferentes áreas del mundo," Revista de Economía Crítica, Asociación de Economía Crítica, vol. 4, pages 17-37.
    2. Shorrocks, A F, 1980. "The Class of Additively Decomposable Inequality Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(3), pages 613-625, April.
    3. Cantore, Nicola & Padilla, Emilio, 2010. "Equality and CO2 emissions distribution in climate change integrated assessment modelling," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 298-313.
    4. Juan Antonio Duro, 2003. "Factor decomposition of spatial income inequality: a revision," Working Papers wpdea0302, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona.
    5. Padilla, Emilio & Serrano, Alfredo, 2006. "Inequality in CO2 emissions across countries and its relationship with income inequality: A distributive approach," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(14), pages 1762-1772, September.
    6. Jobert, Thomas & Karanfil, Fatih & Tykhonenko, Anna, 2010. "Convergence of per capita carbon dioxide emissions in the EU: Legend or reality?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 1364-1373, November.
    7. Cantore, Nicola, 2011. "Distributional aspects of emissions in climate change integrated assessment models," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(5), pages 2919-2924, May.
    8. Duro, Juan Antonio & Padilla, Emilio, 2008. "Analysis of the international distribution of per capita CO2 emissions using the polarization concept," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 456-466, January.
    9. Juan Duro & Emilio Padilla, 2013. "Cross-Country Polarisation in CO 2 Emissions Per Capita in the European Union: Changes and Explanatory Factors," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 54(4), pages 571-591, April.
    10. Duro, Juan Antonio & Alcántara, Vicent & Padilla, Emilio, 2010. "International inequality in energy intensity levels and the role of production composition and energy efficiency: An analysis of OECD countries," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(12), pages 2468-2474, October.
    11. Nicola Cantore & Emilio Padilla, 2009. "Emissions distribution in post–Kyoto international negotiations: a policy perspective," Working Papers wpdea0907, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona.
    12. Mark Heil & Quentin Wodon, 2000. "Future Inequality in CO2 Emissions and the Impact of Abatement Proposals," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 17(2), pages 163-181, October.
    13. Hedenus, Fredrik & Azar, Christian, 2005. "Estimates of trends in global income and resource inequalities," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(3), pages 351-364, November.
    14. Groot, Loek, 2010. "Carbon Lorenz curves," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 45-64, January.
    15. Bourguignon, Francois, 1979. "Decomposable Income Inequality Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(4), pages 901-920, July.
    16. Duro, Juan Antonio & Padilla, Emilio, 2006. "International inequalities in per capita CO2 emissions: A decomposition methodology by Kaya factors," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 170-187, March.
    17. Daniel Millimet & Daniel Slottje, 2002. "An environmental Paglin-Gini," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(4), pages 271-274.
    18. Alcantara, Vicent & Duro, Juan Antonio, 2004. "Inequality of energy intensities across OECD countries: a note," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(11), pages 1257-1260, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Camarero, Mariam & Picazo-Tadeo, Andrés J. & Tamarit, Cecilio, 2013. "Are the determinants of CO2 emissions converging among OECD countries?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 118(1), pages 159-162.
    2. Mohammad Iqbal Irfany, 2015. "Inequality in emissions: Evidence from Indonesian households," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 177, Courant Research Centre PEG.
    3. repec:eee:rensus:v:79:y:2017:i:c:p:9-14 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:eee:enepol:v:107:y:2017:i:c:p:698-710 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Grunewald, Nicole & Jakob, Michael & Mouratiadou, Ioanna, 2014. "Decomposing inequality in CO2 emissions: The role of primary energy carriers and economic sectors," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 183-194.
    6. Juan Duro & Emilio Padilla, 2013. "Cross-Country Polarisation in CO 2 Emissions Per Capita in the European Union: Changes and Explanatory Factors," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 54(4), pages 571-591, April.
    7. Xu, Xinkuo & Han, Liyan & Lv, Xiaofeng, 2016. "Household carbon inequality in urban China, its sources and determinants," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(C), pages 77-86.
    8. repec:gam:jsusta:v:10:y:2018:i:2:p:367-:d:129585 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Chen, Jiandong & Cheng, Shulei & Song, Malin & Wang, Jia, 2016. "Interregional differences of coal carbon dioxide emissions in China," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 1-13.
    10. Liobikienė, Genovaitė & Butkus, Mindaugas & Bernatonienė, Jurga, 2016. "Drivers of greenhouse gas emissions in the Baltic states: decomposition analysis related to the implementation of Europe 2020 strategy," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 309-317.
    11. Sauter, Caspar & Grether, Jean-Marie & Mathys, Nicole A., 2016. "Geographical spread of global emissions: Within-country inequalities are large and increasing," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 138-149.
    12. Mussini, Mauro & Grossi, Luigi, 2015. "Decomposing changes in CO2 emission inequality over time: The roles of re-ranking and changes in per capita CO2 emission disparities," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 274-281.
    13. repec:gam:jsusta:v:9:y:2017:i:5:p:711-:d:97133 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Mohammad Iqbal Irfany & Stephan Klasen, 2016. "Inequality in emissions: evidence from Indonesian household," Environmental Economics and Policy Studies, Springer;Society for Environmental Economics and Policy Studies - SEEPS, vol. 18(4), pages 459-483, October.

    More about this item


    CO2 emissions; emission inequality; European Union; Kaya factors; Theil index.;

    JEL classification:

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:uab:wprdea:wpdea1107. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Miquel Colobran). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.