Interregional Transfer of Carbon Emissions and Shared Responsibility: A Review of Theory and Evidence

  •  Yabei Hu    
  •  Yang Tao    


Addressing global climate change through obligation assignment of region-specific emissions reduction needs to measure not only direct carbon emissions of a particular region but also indirect carbon emissions, which are increasingly raised by interregional transfer of carbon emissions. With the literature on carbon emissions expanding substantially, emission transfers at both international and national levels have attracted a growing attention in the past years. This study provides an overview of the theoretical basis for, and empirical evidence on interregional emission transfers from three perspectives: transfer levels, transfer drivers and shared responsibility. We emphasize the contribution of such research to our understanding of global carbon emissions and regional responsibilities of emissions reduction. The discrepancies with previous studies are discussed in relation to the various theoretical arguments and empirical methods. Finally, based on the literature review, the study discusses theoretical and practical implications for scholars and practitioners, and highlights possible new directions for future research. 

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