PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2012, Vol. 31 ›› Issue (4): 442-450.doi: 10.11820/dlkxjz.2012.04.007

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The Research Progress in the Relationship among Economic Growth, Industrial Structure, and Carbon Emissions

ZHANG Weiyang1,2, DUAN Xuejun1   

  1. 1. Nanjing Institute of Geography & Limnology, CAS, Nanjing 210008, China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2011-05-01 Revised:2011-09-01 Online:2012-04-25 Published:2012-04-25

Abstract: Against the background of global climate change, studies on the carbon emissions, economic growth and industrial structure interrelate and interact with each other as a whole. Scholars in the global climate change area have been paying more and more attention to the interaction and mechanism effects of the complex system. On the basis of reviews of studies at home and abroad, this paper clarifies the interactive and mutual restraint relationship between carbon emissions and the two factors mentions above. The article also reviews and summaries relevant research methods on this topic. According to the comprehensive reviewing, the main contents are as follows: economic analysis of the carbon emissions, the relationship study between industrial development and carbon emissions, the economic losses on the carbon emission reduction, and the research on the low-carbon economy, low-carbon development, urbanization and carbon emissions, and international carbon flow. The main research methods include: econometrics, mathematical statistics, scenario analysis, model simulation, input-output analysis, carbon footprint, and so on. The quantitative and qualitative investigations complement each other. As regards to the research progress, the contents shift from basic analysis to practical application; the theories shift from sustainable development and circulation economy to low carbon economy; research methods tends to be integrated; research perspective starts to involve the community, the family and the individual behavior at the micro-scale. In the future, the writers think that the research theoretical system on carbon emissions and economic- industrial system, methodological innovation and regional studies should be enhanced. Simultaneously, the research should explore our research models and frameworks that are suitable for China. Further work is expected to be the research scale to fill research gaps and offset weaknesses.

Key words: carbon emissions, climate change, economic growth, industrial structure, low carbon economy, research progress