PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2009, Vol. 28 ›› Issue (3): 429-434.doi: 10.11820/dlkxjz.2009.03.016

• Original Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Analysis of Carbon Emission Caused by Food Consumption in Urban and Rural Inhabitants in China

ZHI Jing1,2,3|GAO Jixi1,3   

  1. 1. Chengdu Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, CAS, Chengdu 610041,China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China;
    3. Institute of Ecology, Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences, Beijing 100012, China
  • Online:2009-05-25 Published:2009-05-25


Household is the unit of society, and its development is the basis for sustainable development of society. Food consumption is one of the most important parts of family life. This article, which is based on official data, analyses the differences in food consumptions and the input of energy, agrochemical and other materials between urban inhabitants and rural inhabitants. On this basis, the article quantifies the impact of carbon emission caused by food consumption. The results indicated that the impact on carbon emission by food consumption is increasing according to the economic development and urban inhabitants generate more food consumption carbon emission than the rural inhabitants. In the respect of direct carbon emission per capita, rural inhabitants generate more than city inhabitants, but the indirect carbon emission of urban inhabitants far outweighs the amount of rural inhabitants. City residents are inclined to eat more non-staple foods, processed foods or attractively-packaged foods and the increase in indirect energy and the input of other materials will increase markedly. The key to mitigating the impact on carbon emission by food consumption is to advocate low-carbon food habit and improve energy utilization of relevant industries.

Key words: carbon emission;urbanization;China, food consumption, urban-rural differences