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Regional disparities in the Chinese economy. An emergy evaluation of provincial international trade

Tian, X; Gong, Y; Viglia, S; Bleischwitz, R; Buonocore, E; Ulgiati, S; (2017) Regional disparities in the Chinese economy. An emergy evaluation of provincial international trade. Resources, Conservation and Recycling , 126 pp. 1-11. 10.1016/j.resconrec.2017.07.017. Green open access

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Abstract

Due to different resource endowment, geographical features, culture and population sizes, different regions are facing different challenges and therefore need to adopt different strategies toward sustainable development. China’s Eastern, Central and Western provinces are taking different policies on international trade in order to boost their economy. This paper tries to investigate to what extent a province receives a trade advantage and the corresponding environmental resource flows by employing an emergy accounting method for the period of 1993–2012. Three emergy trade indicators (Exchange Emergy Ratio, Emergy Benefit Ratio and Opportunity Ratio) were calculated along with conventional monetary indicators, to describe the benefits and losses in trade over the investigated period. The results show that the total trade volume of each province increased, but the trajectory of growth has a clear regional disparity. Eastern provinces gained economic advantages during the investigated period, while western provinces did not. The key finding is that benefits in terms of resource availability and work potential are not always in line with monetary advantages. Foreign trade partners received more advantages than their Chinese counterparts although Eastern Chinese provinces performed much better than both Central and Western Chinese provinces. Policy suggestions are then raised so that more sustainable trade policies can be prepared by considering the local realities.

Type: Article
Title: Regional disparities in the Chinese economy. An emergy evaluation of provincial international trade
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.resconrec.2017.07.017
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.resconrec.2017.07.017
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Emergy, International trade, Resources, China
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1568359
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