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Abstract

One of the most widely discussed books on the environmental dilemma is “The Closing Circle” by Barry Commoner, director of the Center for Biology and Natural Systems at Washington University, St. Louis. Shortly after its publication (Knopf, 1971), a critique of the book was issued by Paul R. Ehrlich, professor of biological sciences at Stanford University, and John P. Holdren, a physicist at the Environmental Quality Laboratory, California Institute of Technology. Professor Ehrlich, also author of a widely discussed book, “The Population Bomb” (Ballantine, 1968, 1971), and Dr. Holdren state in part that “in fixing the blame for environmental deterioration on faulty technology alone, Commoner's position is uncomplicated, socially comfortable and, hence, seductive. But there is little point in deluding the public on these matters; the truth is that we must grapple simultaneously with overpopulation, excessive affluence and faulty technology.” The Bulletin herewith presents the Ehrlich-Holdren critique and Commoner's response.

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... Equation (2) examines the various factors motivating environmental pollution [101]. IPAT Kaya identity has already been employed in China, Pakistan, OECD countries, and South Korea [1, 75,77], and was first introduced by Ehrlich and Holdren [102]. The IPAT model provides the framework to analyze the determinants of the environment based on three shortcomings. ...
... Secondly, the model shows the relationship between population, affluence, and technology. Thirdly, Ehrlich and Holdren [102] measure the environmental impact. This also tests the effect of economic development on the environment. ...
... The model examines the variations in R&D activities motivated by the reduction of fossil fuel power regarding research and development investment and the creation of green patents. According to Ehrlich and Holdren [102], IPAT provides a simple theoretical framework to analyze the given factors of the environment. CO 2 emissions, GDP, TEC, FFC, R&D, and Patents have been taken as variables to find out both emissions and environmental effects. ...
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Energy plays an imperative role in global economies, such that products and services are generally dependent on energy use. This study leads to the application of environmental policies under green research and development (R&D) investment in Pakistan. Existing research has tried to analyze the effects of R&D investment associated with patent applications using the logarithmic mean Divisia index (LMDI) method called PATENT. The objective of this method is to examine the variations in R&D activities motivated by the reduction of fossil fuel power. The research contributes the following: (1) the R&D reaction is the main factor in raising the number of patent applications, while R&D efficiency needs more enhancements. (2) Reaction and production effects are imperative in raising the number of patent applications during the study period. (3) R&D expenditure presents a significant rise in renewable energy technologies (RETs), by 6.7% yearly, which ultimately impacts the economy, sustainability, and the environment. (4) Energy intensity shows a lowering trend in economic development, which confirms that that share of energy will decline, and that Pakistan will move towards significant contributions. Finally, the results show that raising R&D investments, technology transfer and engendered measures are the authentic approaches to Pakistan’s environmental and economic development. Based on the analyzed method, the study recommends that environmental regulation policies’ efficiency be incremented by investing and joining them with RETs. Furthermore, the concerned policies linked with the estimated outcomes are provided below.
... It expresses total emission levels as the product of four factors: Human population size, GDP per capita, energy intensity (per unit of GDP), and carbon intensity (emissions per unit of energy consumed). The Kaya identity is an application of the IPAT identity (I = PAT) [7,8], which relates human impact on the environment (I) to the product of population (P), affluence (A), and technology (T). Empirical research has extended IPAT to estimate drivers of CO 2 emission using statistical regression techniques follow the STIRPAT framework [9,10], which is described in a following section. ...
... where I represents environmental impact, A represents affluence, and T represents technology [7,8,30]. For CO 2 emissions as the focal impact, this identity can be expressed as: ...
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This study investigates the role of urban form as a technological driver of U.S. CO2 emissions for the onroad and residential sectors. The STIRPAT (Stochastic Impacts by Region on Population, Affluence, and Technology) human structural ecology framework is extended by drawing from science and technology studies (STS) to theorize urban form as a sociotechnical system involving practices and knowledge that contribute to urban land use as a material artifact on the landscape influencing emissions. Questions addressed are: (1) “What is the influence of urban form on total sector CO2 emissions?” and (2) “How does the influence of urban form on CO2 emissions differ for metropolitan versus non-metropolitan status?” Spatial error regression models were estimated using county-level CO2 emissions data from Project Vulcan. The National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD) was used to quantify measures of urban form. Other independent variables were derived from U.S. Census data. Results demonstrate carbon reduction benefits achievable through a developed land use mix containing a greater proportion of high intensity relative to low intensity use. Urban form matters, but it matters differently in terms of sign, significance, and interpretation depending on emission sector and metro versus non-metro status. A focus on urban form provides policymakers potential leverage for carbon mitigation efforts that focus on total emissions as opposed to per capita emission. A feature of the research is its integration of concepts and theory from structural human ecology, STS, land change science, and GIScience.
... It builds on the older concept of carrying capacity applied to the human population (see, e.g. Ehrlich and Holdren, 1972;Catton, 1980;Vitousek et al., 1986). More specifically, it is based on the first sustainability principle of Daly (1990), i.e. that harvests of renewable resources should not exceed their regeneration. ...
... In the world of autarkic national economies, the Netherlands could run an ecological deficit only in the short term. In the long term, without technological progress, the population and/or its consumption would decrease as the IPAT equation suggests (see Ehrlich and Holdren, 1972). ...
Article
This paper focuses on using the Ecological Footprint concept for sustainability assessment. The Ecological Footprint is a popular indicator of human use of environmental resources and is commonly presented at the country level by comparing the consumption footprint with territorial biocapacity, with a negative balance implying unsustainability. This constrains a country's consumption by its biocapacity but allows its stock of resources to be depleted if they are not associated with domestic consumption. This paper argues that this approach is legitimate but should not automatically constitute a default framework for interpretation. Two perspectives on entitlements to environmental resources are analyzed and, based on them, a novel approach to sustainability assessment is proposed. The paper further discusses the links between national sustainability and the related issues of self-sufficiency, consumption, and responsibility.
... In the literature, analysis aimed at disaggregating the impact of the energy system on sustainability has been developed as IPAT Identity [8], based on population, affluence and technology, and Kaya Identity [9], which expresses CO2 emissions as the product of demographic (population, P), economic (per capita income, g), efficiency (energy intensity, e) and emissive (carbon intensity, f) factors. ...
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Nowadays, a very strong concern is coming from the fact that human intervention is heavily affecting the environment. In the past, the most harmful countries for the environment were the USA and Europe due to their development and level of industrialization. Today, the most impactful countries on the environment are the ones from across Asia, especially China and India. In order to interrupt these issues and to help prevent the further deterioration of the world, the UN redacted the 2030 Agenda. This presents a possible way in which countries might act against the effects of climate changes, reducing global warming and further world pollution. Being the most ambitious in this regard, the EU decided to implement the Green Deal. In our paper, based on the EU accomplishments in this direction, we try to build a scenario of how the world will look like if the three most polluting countries will apply the targets set by the EU. In this attempt, we used the Kaya Identity to measure the forecasted impact and arrived to the conclusion that, by applying this measures, energy consumption will be reduced, the consumption of renewable energy will increase, CO2 emissions will be reduced and the world can manage to come back to the level it had in 1990.
... The excessive consumption of richer groups, both in the global north and among elites in the global south, was one of the main arguments for contesting the notion that over-population might be solely responsible for environmental impacts, pointing towards the social dynamics underpinning (un-)sustainable consumption. These dynamics are exemplified in the IPAT formula (Ehrlich and Holdren, 1972), whereby environment impacts (I) are seen as resulting from the relation between population growth (P), affluence (for which consumption can be a proxy) (A) and technological efficiency gains (T). 1 Much is missing from this formula; not least, the question of power dynamics, and the social impacts of current systems of production and consumption. While 'affluence' was under-problematised for a number of years in consumption and sustainability studies, it is now gaining more traction in scientific research, as well as in the media; although in both instances, the question of overpopulation is revived quite regularly. ...
... The IPAT is an equation format that integrates sustainability outputs to three major causal factors: population, affluence, and technology. The equation of IPAT was initially proposed during the 1970s to deeply understand the change in population, affluence, and technology toward their environmental impact (I) (Ehrlich and Holdren, 1972). More specifically, in the IPAT application, the term T mainly determines the environmental impact per unit for the economic activity. ...
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This study focuses on determining the relationship between carbon emissions, financial development, population, green technology innovation, energy Consumption, and employment rate from 1980 to 2019 in China. The study applies the unit root test, bootstrapped ARDL cointegration, and the Granger causality to examine the data properties and association between the variables of interest. Empirical findings indicate that green technology innovations and financial development play a major role in environmental protection, specifically in the long run. In contrast, energy consumption and employment rate are more vulnerable to protecting the natural environment in China. On the other side, the findings under short-run estimation do not support the role of green technology innovation in reducing environmental degradation. Based on the empirical findings, it is suggested that a strong financial system would help to achieve long-run sustainability and the emissions mitigating effects can be further strengthen by implementing green technologies across industries. In doing so, strict environmental regulations can regulate the financial and traditional industrial sector in adoption of energy efficient technologies.
... However, when the economic goals have been achieved which means that per capita income has increased, the level of awareness of environmental quality begins to develop (Spilker, Koubi, & Bernauer, 2017). Ehrlich and Holdren (1972) in their theory of Impacts of Population, Affluence and Technology (IPAT) explain that income and population are the main factors that can affect the environment. It will decrease along with the development of technology. ...
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Global warming and climate change show a decrease in environmental quality. The main cause of global warming is the emission of carbon dioxide (CO2). This study aims to analyze the effect of economic growth and economic openness on environmental quality in ASEAN countries from 2010 to 2019. This research uses a panel data analysis method. The analysis results show that the variable economic growth has a negative and significant effect on carbon dioxide emissions. Meanwhile, the variables used for economic openness are exports, imports, and FDI. Export and FDI variables have a positive and significant effect on CO2 emissions, but there is no effect on imports. This study also used population variables as control variables and the result is there is no effect on CO2. Based on the results, it is necessary to have a carbon emission reduction policy for ASEAN countries using environmentally friendly technology.
... La relation entre activités humaines et environnement a accaparé le débat public, au début des années soixante-dix. Beaucoup d'économistes se sont intéressés à l'analyse de cette relation, Ehrlich et al. (1970, 1972) et Commoner (1971, pionniers dans la modélisation de la relation entre activités humaines et environnement, trouvent que cette relation peut être modélisée sous forme d'une identité appelée IPAT. Cette équation exprime l'impact de l'homme sur l'environnement, selon de trois facteurs : la population, le niveau d'activité économique et la technologie. ...
Thesis
Au cours de ces dernières années, la croissance des investissements mondiaux dans les énergies renouvelables a été rapide. En effet, les énergies renouvelables (ER) sont considérées comme une alternative pour faire face au réchauffement climatique, à la raréfaction des ressources naturelles, à l’augmentation de la demande énergétique, à la volatilité des prix de l’énergie fossile et à la répartition inégale des sources énergétiques. Nous nous proposons dans cette thèse de mener une analyse visant à approfondir les réflexions sur l’investissement dans les ER (IER). Le premier objectif consiste à évaluer le retour sur l’IER. Nous avons choisi d’évaluer théoriquement et empiriquement l’impact de l’IER sur les émissions des Gaz à Effet de Serre (GES) et sur la Productivité Totale des Facteurs (PTF). Le deuxième objectif de cette thèse vise à évaluer l’impact des instruments de soutien au développement des ER (ISER) sur l’IER. Dans le premier chapitre, nous avons montré comment la relation entre les IER et les émissions de CO2 n’est pas linéaire, mais qu’elle prend la forme d’une courbe en U inversé. En d’autres termes, les IER ont un effet positif sur les émissions de CO2 jusqu'à ce que ces investissements atteignent un niveau donné, ou un certain seuil, au-delà duquel, les IER auront un impact négatif sur les émissions de CO2. Cette relation a été testé empiriquement en utilisant la régression en panel à transition brutale (PTR : Panel Threshold Regression model). Le deuxième chapitre de la thèse explore la relation entre l’investissement en énergie renouvelable (IER) et la productivité. En nous référant à la théorie de la croissance endogène, nous avons testé empiriquement notre hypothèse principale qui stipule que l’IER affecte positivement la croissance de la Productivité Totale des Facteurs. L’étude empirique a été réalisée sur un panel de 43 pays développés et en développement, à l’aide de la méthodologie de GMM-système. Au regard des résultats obtenus, cette étude a permis de confirmer notre hypothèse. En effet l’impact positif des IER sur la croissance de la PTF s’explique par le fait que l’IER encourage le transfert technologique et occasionne d'importantes retombées de connaissances (« knowledge spillover »). L’objectif du troisième chapitre consiste à discuter le rôle et l’impact des Instruments de Soutien au développement des ER (ISER) sur l’IER. Nous nous intéressons précisément à l’efficacité des ISER pour attirer les investissements en nouvelles capacité de production d’électricité à partir de sources d’énergie renouvelable. Nous pouvons déduire de notre étude que l’amélioration des IER passe généralement par les instruments de marché, et non pas par les instruments de commande et de contrôle, à l’exception des pays à faible revenu. D’ailleurs, une combinaison entre les instruments du « Market-pull » et du « Market-push » permet de soutenir les IER. Nous remarquons aussi que le soutien des IER passe par les instruments qui affectent indirectement ces investissements. En effet, pour encourager les IER, il vaut mieux agir en amont, en incitant la recherche, de développement et de déploiement (RDD) dans le secteur des ER, et en aval, en stimulant la production d’électricité renouvelable, à travers les tarifs d’achat garanti (les « Feed-in-Tariffs» ).
... The decoupling indicator of IGT is derived from a famous IPAT Equation (Commoner, 1972;Ehrlich and Holdren, 1972): ...
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Beijing, the capital of China, is experiencing a serious lack of water, which is becoming a main factor in the restriction of the development of the social economy. Due to the low economic efficiency and high consumption proportion of agricultural water use, the relationship between economic growth and agricultural water use is worth investigating. The “decoupling” index is becoming increasingly popular for identifying the degree of non-synchronous variation between resource consumption and economic growth. However, few studies address the decoupling between the crop water consumption and agricultural economic growth. This paper involves the water footprint (WF) to assess the water consumption in the crop production process. After an evaluation of the crop WF in Beijing, this paper applies the decoupling indicators to examine the occurrence of non-synchronous variation between the agricultural gross domestic product (GDP) and crop WF in Beijing from 1981 to 2013. The results show that the WF of crop production in 2013 reduced by 62.1% compared to that in 1980 — in total, 1.81 × 109 m3. According to the decoupling states, the entire study period is divided into three periods. From 1981 to 2013, the decoupling states represented seventy-five percent of the years from 1981 to 1992 (Period I) with a moderate decoupling degree, more than ninety percent from 1993 to 2003 (Period II) with a very strong decoupling degree and moved from non-decoupling to strong decoupling from 2004 to 2013 (Period III). Adjusting plantation structure, technology innovation and raising awareness of water-saving, may promote the decoupling degree between WF and agricultural GDP in Beijing.
... In order to conduct the LMDI decomposition analysis, an identity equation composed of the object to be analyzed and its factors should be constructed. Many environments and energy studies have set the identity equation based on the "Impact = PAT" identity equation (Equation (1)), which was introduced by Ehrlich and Holden [24,25] ...
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The economies of ASEAN member states are growing rapidly, and electrical and electronic waste (E-waste) generated from them are also showing a rapid increase. In this context, this study conducted an LMDI decomposition analysis on the amount of E-waste generated in ASEAN member countries from 2015 to 2019 and decomposed it into E-waste intensity, economic growth, and population effects. Then, based on analysis results, policy implications are suggested to improve their E-waste management. According to the analysis results, ASEAN countries can be classified into three groups. The first group includes Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand; economic growth was the main driving factor of E-waste increase in these countries. However, E-waste had also decreased due to the effect of E-waste intensity. The second group includes countries where economic growth was not the only driving factor for E-waste increase, but also where E-waste had increased due to the effect of E-waste intensity. These countries include Cambodia, Malaysia, and Viet Nam. Finally, the third group consists of countries where the effect of E-waste intensity is the main driving factor, including Brunei Darussalam, Lao PDR, and Myanmar. This research shows that ASEAN countries need policies that can effectively deal with the threat of E-waste as a result of high economic growth and policies that can improve intensity by reducing the generation of E-waste.
... That's on the medium variant, but it may err on the low side (O'Sullivan, 2016). The IPAT equation makes it clear that population, along with affluence and the limits of technology, is a factor determining our collective impact on the environment (Ehrlich and Holdren, 1972). That deleterious impact includes climate change, which threatens human lives, health, and community (IPCC, 2014). ...
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This paper outlines a moral framework for the debate on global population policy. Questions of population, climate justice and global justice are morally inseparable and failure to address them as such has dangerous implications. Considerations of population lend additional urgency to existing collective duties to act on global poverty and climate change. Choice-providing procreative policies are a key part of that. However, even were we collectively to fulfil these duties, we would face morally hard choices over whether to introduce incentive-changing procreative policies. Thus, there is now no possible collective course of action which is not morally problematic.
... Over the last decades, decomposition analyses of the environmental impact of the energy system have been developed in the literature. The IPAT identity (Ehrlich and Holdren, 1972) was pioneering in disaggregating the Impact on sustainability into three drivers: Population, Affluence and Technology. As an application of the former, the Kaya Identity (KI) (IPCC, 2014) expressed CO 2 emissions as the product of demographic (population, P), economic (per capita income, g), efficiency (energy intensity, e) and emissive (carbon intensity, f) factors. ...
Article
The impact of energy use on the planet due to related CO2 emissions is continuously increasing, despite the adoption of efficiency and decarbonisation policies and widespread environmental awareness. Climate change mitigation will only succeed if the driving forces of consumption and emissions are deeply analysed, and effective means are provided to reverse their trends. To this aim, the Kaya Identity framework is revisited to classify indicators and decomposition studies in the literature. A comprehensive pyramid approach is proposed for the progressive disaggregation and discussion of energy and emissions changes. The approach is applied to the OECD and non-OECD to provide meaningful regional analysis of past trends and future projections according to stated policy intentions. Results show that a hopeful change has already begun in the developed region due to a sustained decrease of the energy intensity and a promising reduction of the carbon intensity. Emerging economies follow the performance of developed nations since 2013, held back by later economic development. Activity slowdown, energy conservation, renewable electrification, efficient power plants and coal phase out appear as the keystones for decarbonisation. As a result, emissions stabilisation could have already been achieved as rises in emerging countries are offset by drops in developed nations. However, more stringent climate policies, especially targeting carbon drivers, are urgently needed to enable emissions reductions compatible with a global temperature increase of 1.5ºC.
... The IPAT identity describes the multiplicative contribution of population (P), affluence (A) and technology (T) on environmental impact (I) [71,72]. Environmental impact may be expressed in terms of resource depletion or accumulation of emissions; population refers to the size of the human population; affluence refers to the level of consumption by that population; and technology refers to the processes used to obtain resources and transform them into useful goods and wastes. ...
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Distribution of natural resources is considered to be a key aspect in ensuring the success of conservation policies. The Common Fisheries Policy, implemented by the European Union (EU), is an example of long-term international cooperation for sustainability of the marine environment. Nonetheless, continued enforcement of the policy is threatened by its insufficient effectiveness in restoring fish stocks and the tensions that have arisen over unequal distribution of benefits. Recent adoption of the Blue Growth Strategy represents an additional challenge for EU fisheries, since it encourages new alternative economic activities. The present analysis aims to identify ways of enhancing the sustainability of EU fisheries while achieving greater equity in resource distribution and maintaining the activity of the fishing industry, an important staple of many coastal communities in the EU. To this end, the study decomposes heterogeneity amongst per capita landing rates of EU Member States. A number of findings from the decompositions used may be highlighted. Firstly, most of the heterogeneity in per-capita landing rates between Member States occurs within the main EU fishing areas, especially FAO Areas 27 and 37. Secondly, fishing production factors affect per-capita landing heterogeneity to a different extent in Areas 27 and 37. The only exception is the number of fishers, the factor contributing most to heterogeneity in both areas. Technological factors appear to diminish heterogeneity in Area 27 whilst positively contributing to heterogeneity in Area 37. More efficient fleet adjustments could be designed taking into account these contributions by production factors to heterogeneity within fisheries.
... Commoner [32] played an essential role in the formulation of the IPAT identity in the algebraic formulation, to address policies related to increasing environmental degradation [33]. Consequently, the IPAT identity has become well-known in 1972, by [34] as follows: ...
... The debate between Ehrlich and Holdren (1970, 1972 and Commoner et al. (1971) regarding the factors that influence environmental damage resulted in the IPAT identity, which states that the environmental impacts of a country (I) can be decomposed into the product of three principal factors: population (P), affluence (A) and technology (T), York et al. (2003). The main limitations of the IPAT identity are that the number of factors is limited and the impact of the factors is proportional as all of them affect the environment equally. ...
Article
Despite the evidence, the correlation between environmental impact factors has mostly been neglected in econometric environmental models or treated with traditional methodologies such as ridge regression, which are recommended when the goal is prediction and the estimated parameters are not interpreted as causal effects. This paper addresses the existing collinearity with alternative methodologies, not only to mitigate the problem mechanically, but also to isolate the effects of the environmental impact factors with the main objective of designing better policies for countries. The methodologies are applied to analyze the CO\(_2\) emissions of 114 countries covering the thirteen most recent years with available data, and the results from the empirical and methodological perspectives are compared. The treatment of collinearity with the residualization or raise regression procedures allows the researcher to obtain a global vision of the relationship between the different factors affecting CO\(_2\) emissions, thus reaching alternative conclusions to those from traditional methodologies.
... Effective mitigation measures will not be possible without gaining deep insights into emissions changes, in order to define future pathways to sustainable development and improve governance in this field [6,7]. In this respect, in 1990, as an application of the previous IPAT equation [8], Kaya [9] identified four underlying factors for CO 2 emissions (F): population (P), wealth (g), energy intensity (e) and carbon intensity (f): ...
Article
Energy efficiency remains as the main mitigation factor to slow down the growth of energy consumption and related CO2 emissions, undoubtedly the major responsible for climate change. Gaining insights into the driving forces that make efficiency change is a keystone to define energy policies and examine pathways to sustainable development. To this aim, this paper proposes a pyramidal approach for the analysis and decomposition of energy intensity, the main global efficiency indicator, using the LMDI method. First, the effects related to supply and demand sides of the energy system are separated in Primary Energy Factor and final energy intensity, respectively. Then, supply side is further decomposed to progressively reveal structural effects associated to transformation processes and fuel types. The approach is applied to the most emitting and consuming nations (China, United States, European Union, India, Russia, Japan) to provide a meaningful cross-country analysis over the period 1995–2017. Results show that energy intensity gains have been mainly driven by widespread demand side efficiency improvements from 25% to 61%. Regarding the supply side, unfavourable structural changes due to electrification, up to 12% in China, have only been offset by transformation efficiency gains about 6% in developed countries. Consequently, emerging economies have worsened their energy sector efficiency as they thrive. Changes in fuel mixes have generally contributed to energy intensity reductions (up to 4%) mainly due to shifts from coal and nuclear power towards gas and renewables plants. The proposed methodology could help stakeholders to effectively analyse the energy system and to develop policies to reduce its environmental impact.
... As for the prediction of carbon dioxide emissions, the most widely used prediction models include the IPAT model [15], STIRPAT model [16], scenario analysis method [17,18], and regression analysis method [19]. In the early 1970s, Ehrlich et al. established the famous IPAT equation [20] to study the impact of population on environmental change. However, IPAT equation has a certain limitation, which is to analyze the influence of a changed factor on environmental change on the premise of keeping other factors unchanged, so as to obtain the result of equal proportional influence on dependent variables. ...
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As the largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world, the peak values of Chinese CO2 emissions have attracted extensive attention at home and abroad. The carbon dioxide emissions of the Chinese transportation industry, accounting for 9.5% of total carbon dioxide emissions, is one of the high-emission industries, and its total carbon dioxide emissions continue to rise. Therefore, the accurate prediction of the peak values of carbon dioxide emissions from the Chinese transportation industry is helpful for China to formulate a reasonable policy of carbon dioxide emissions control. This paper, firstly, selects six major factors affecting the carbon dioxide emissions of the Chinese transportation industry. They are the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), population, urbanization rate, energy consumption structure, energy intensity, and industrial structure. Then, it builds a prediction model of carbon dioxide emissions based on Support Vector Regression (SVR). Finally, it analyses the sensitivity of each factor. The predicted results show that, under the baseline scenario, they will reach a peak of 1365.71 million tons in 2040; under the low-carbon scenario, the carbon dioxide emissions of Chinese transportation will peak at 1115.43 million tons in 2036; and in the high-carbon scenario, the peak value will occur in 2046 and the carbon dioxide emissions will be 1738.18 million tons. In order to promote the early peak of carbon dioxide emissions from the transportation industry, it is, firstly, necessary to change the mode of economic growth and appropriately reduce the speed of economic development. Secondly, the energy intensity of the transportation industry is reduced and the utilization rate of clean energy is improved. Thirdly, the industrial structure is optimized. Fourthly, the carbon dioxide emissions of the transportation industry caused by the increased urbanization rate are reasonably controlled.
... Generally, there are two modes of decoupling: resource decoupling (or dematerialization) and decreasing negative environmental impacts, such as CO 2 emissions. Lu et al. derived a pair of decoupling indicators for resource use and CO 2 emissions from the IPAT equation [61][62][63]. e decoupling indicator is given by the following formula: ...
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Over the past three decades, China has experienced rapid economic growth along with a rapid increase in urbanization and living standards, leading to a boom in infrastructure demand. A large part of China’s newly constructed infrastructure is through urban construction; thus, cities have become a major source of material consumption and carbon emissions. Understanding the relationship between material consumption, carbon emissions, and the economic growth of cities is key to ensuring that the construction of infrastructure satisfies the needs for both economic development and dematerialization. In this study, we first accounted for material consumption and the carbon emissions of infrastructure construction of 34 cities in Northeast China and characterized spatial and temporal changes from 2010–2017. The material use and carbon emissions of infrastructure construction declined by 34.6% and 30.2% during this period. Specifically, material consumption decreased from 305.2 million tonnes to 199.6 million tonnes, and carbon emissions decreased from 77.7 million tonnes to 54.3 million tonnes. Furthermore, we used a decoupling indicator to evaluate the decoupling of material consumption or carbon emissions from GDP in these cities. We found that most cities have achieved the absolute decoupling of material consumption and carbon emissions from GDP over the study period. Finally, we proposed several policy recommendations for promoting the sustainable development of the infrastructure of cities. To ensure that cities realize low-carbon urbanization, policymakers need to promote modular buildings and low-emission construction materials. This paper also serves as a practical reference for the improvement of relevant materials and carbon emissions management strategies for other developing regions.
... 16 The Ecological Economics community rejects this assertion based on the idea that Earth is an open system, receiving daily energy flow from the sun. Infinite flows of available energy (exergy), if we make good use of it, enable the applicability of a "perfect circular economy" in theory Ehrlich et Holdren (1972) were first with the idea of the IPAT identity to understand the anthropogenic environmental impacts and their driving forces 17 . The IPAT suggests that the environmental impacts (I) result from the combination of 3 factors: population (P), affluence (A) and technology (T): ...
Thesis
The Circular Economy (CE) concept is inspiring new governmental policies along with company strategies. This has led to the emergence of a plethora of indicators to quantify the “circularity” of individual companies or products. Preserving resources and reducing emissions are both necessary conditions to achieve a sustainable CE, and the corresponding assessment tools should be selected accordingly. Approaches behind these indicators build mainly on two implicit premises: (1) maximizing material circularity contributes to mitigating environmental impacts and (2) closing material loops at product level leads to improvements in material efficiency for the economy as a whole. While the first case gives rise to environmental trade-off situations, the second case disregards the scale effects. To the question immediately formulated in the title "Is circular economy good for the environment?", we argue that yes, provided that these two premises can be sufficiently well verified to be monitored. With the literature increasingly questioning these premises and the development of new indicators related to the popularization of the CE concept, we asked ourselves the following question: should we develop new tools dedicated to CE? The literature review reveals different types of tools either used to measure the degree of circularity of a system defined in time and space, or to measure the effects on the ecosphere. To date, no tool allows (1) to capture the whole range of CE strategies, (2) to monitor trade-off situations nor (3) to integrate scale effects. Without providing a new analytical tool, this thesis lays the foundations for a methodological approach that integrates these three criteria. In the first paper, we challenge the first premise that material circularity contributes to mitigating environmental impacts using the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and the Material Circularity Indicator (MCI) through two case studies from the tire industry. In the most comprehensive case study, we analyze three scenarios to process used tires in Brazil: baseline, retreading and regrooving. We propose an approach to discuss MCI and LCA results that identifies four pathways toward or away from the CE goal: coupling, decoupling, trade-off related to resource consumption or trade-off related to emissions. The case studies reveal that extending lifetime through retreading and introducing recycled material improve the MCI of a tire, but do not necessarily improve impacts on human health and ecosystems. In the second paper, we challenge the both premises, on the environmental trade-off and the scale effect, with a case study on closed-loop recycling of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles in the USA. The MCI and the impact on climate change revealed by the LCA show that closing the material flows within the scope of a bottle lifecycle increases its circularity and decreases the environmental impacts. This, however, shift burdens to other sectors where recycled PET is applied and where using high quality PET is not required. However, expanding the assessment scope to the entire PET market, open-loop recycling by including other applications to introduce recycled PET, i.e. fiber textile, sheets and films, appears more beneficial and that increasing the post-consumer bottle reclamation rate is the major environmental improvement lever for the PET market. In the third paper we develop a versatile approach to assess the environmental performance of CE strategies, building on an empirical use of the IPAT (Impact = Population x Affluence x Technology). Our approach can distinguish activities by region, industry or process for instance, and the product of environmental efficiency factors, embodied in T, illustrates key drivers for CE implementation, e.g. GHG/materials and materials/product. CE is often linked to decoupling the economic activity from the degradation of the environment. Hence, we use our approach to quantify the contribution of a CE strategy to an overall decoupling according to the scenarios of technological efficiency factors. This type of approach allows, for example, to deduce the maximum allowable increase in the production of a material to ensure the effectiveness of circularity strategies. We illustrate this approach with data from the scenario analysis carried out by the Swedish consultancy Material Economics, then taken over by the Ellen Macarthur Foundation. The first paper shows trade-offs in the results between the MCI and the LCA resource indicator and thereby highlight relevant issues to the design of future assessment tools; while the MCI measures the degree of circularity, LCA indicators measure the environmental impact of a circular strategy. Results of the second paper show that improving the circularity of a single product does not necessarily improve products average because product circularity does not necessarily reduce virgin resource demand and environmental impacts at a broader market perspective. Hence, we conclude that a CE assessment scope should be systemic enough to enhance progress towards reducing environmental impacts and that the way product-level circularity assessment is currently performed is contradictory to the symbiotic purpose of CE. The approached developed in the third paper is versatile enough to meet the three criteria that current tools in the literature fail to integrate – CE strategies, monitoring trade-off situations and integrating scale effects – but it currently does not allow the integration of market effects in a pragmatic way. The use of general equilibrium models could fill this gap. To the question "should we develop new tools dedicated to CE?", this research work demonstrate that a better integration of existing tools would suffice. A possible research avenue could be based on, for instance, using the decomposition of the indicator proposed in the third article to identify the “economic structure” characteristic of a product, a component or a material by combining existing methodologies based on a matrix computational structure. The combined use of these tools would assess the contribution of a product to a CE, rather than assessing the degree of circularity of the product itself.
... Uno de los primeros modelos que se utilizaron para explicar los factores determinantes de los impactos ambientales fue propuesto por Ehrlich y Holdren (1972a). Conocido como IPAT, el modelo propone que los impactos ambientales (I=Impact) se explican por el producto de tres factores: población (P=Population), la actividad económica (A=Affluence), y la tecnología (T= Technology) (Ehrlich & Holdren, 1972b). A través de los años, este modelo se ha utilizado para explicar la dinámica de las emisiones de CO2, al aplicarse a diferentes escalas espaciales y temporales (Dietz y Rosa, 1997;York et al., 2002;Zilio, 2008;Alcántara, 2009;Song et al., 2011;Yue et al., 2013). ...
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El estudio de la dinámica de los factores determinantes de las emisiones de CO2, y el efecto que estos factores ejercen sobre la variación de las mismas, brinda argumentos útiles para establecer metas de reducción. El objetivo del presente estudio es analizar la identidad de Kaya para identificar los factores que impulsan la variación interanual de las emisiones de CO2 generadas por el consumo de combustible en el sector industrial manufacturero de San Luis Potosí durante el periodo 2000-2012. Los resultados arrojaron que el factor del PIB manufacturero ejerce un efecto importante en las emisiones en periodos de tiempo largos, y la intensidad energética en lapsos menores; además, aunque el efecto del factor del índice de carbonización no fue de los más contribuyentes en la variación de las emisiones de CO2, su efecto es significativo en el corto plazo. Palabras clave: sector manufacturero, dióxido de carbono, factores determinantes, intensidad de carbonización, intensidad energética, PIB per cápita. Disponible en: https://www.academia.edu/28324601/Villahermosa
... The virtues of limiting or reducing consumption, especially among the wealthy, have been articulated since ancient times, while theories and concepts associated with sufficiency have been developed over the last half century [7,9]. These ideas include critical thresholds or ceilings [10], limits to growth [11,12] and limits to affluence [13,14], optimal scale [15,16], environmentally or strongly sustainable consumption [17,18], voluntary ecological behaviors and lifestyles [19,20], degrowth [21], safe and just operating space [22], and ecological intensity of well-being [23]. The associated perspectives on sufficiency broadly draw attention to the point at which further consumption does more harm than good, urging a shift to living well on less as an important element for just transitions. ...
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Efforts to achieve an energy transition often neglect to account for the levelling of benefits realizable with higher levels of energy use, despite knowledge of a saturation effect and recognition of increasing harms of use. This research examines energy sufficiency as a maximum quantity of energy associated with improvements in human well-being to inform a recalibration of energy targets among high-energy societies. A systematic review of recent research was performed to identify the point at which increasing levels of energy use no longer correlate with meaningful increases in well-being. For selected studies (n = 18), energy sufficiency values range from 60–120 gigajoules per capita per year with a mean of 132 gigajoules per capita per year for associated measures of well-being. The review finds agreement in a pattern of saturation and provides a range of values for energy sufficiency maximums, suggesting that a relatively modest amount and a diverse quality of energy is needed to support high levels of human well-being. Beyond the conventional emphasis on energy efficiency and renewable energy, energy sufficiency therefore offers a necessary and complementary approach for supporting just and ecological energy transitions.
... Human impacts on the environment can be decomposed into three drivers: population , average per-capita consumption, and a technology factor. [86][87][88] Consumption is measured in terms of services like nutrition (kcal), heat (Btu), light (lumens), or transportation (eg, passenger miles). Consumption is not a modern phenomenon. ...
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The emergence of new empirical evidence and ethical debate about families created by assisted reproduction has called into question the current regulatory frameworks that govern reproductive donation in many countries. In this multidisciplinary book, social scientists, ethicists and lawyers offer fresh perspectives on the current challenges facing the regulation of reproductive donation and suggest possible ways forward. They address questions such as: what might people want to know about the circumstances of their conception? Should we limit the number of children donors can produce? Is it wrong to pay donors or to reward them with cut-price fertility treatments? Is overseas surrogacy exploitative of women from poor communities? Combining the latest empirical research with analysis of ethics, policy and legislation, the book focuses on the regulation of gamete and embryo donation and surrogacy at a time when more people are considering assisted reproduction and when new techniques and policies are underway.
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In Chap. 1, I mentioned that the cause of environmental problems is attributed to economic activity. Therefore, the three major agents in the economy—consumers, producers, and government—must cooperate to mitigate the economic impact on the environment. In this chapter, I show the importance of these economic actors to come together to create a society where the development of new environmental technologies is accepted and promoted for achieving sustainable development. Then, the concept of sustainability is explained and suggests the significance of implementing policies to shift toward a stronger type of sustainability.
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The measurement of eco-efficiency is an important tool to evaluate the level of urban sustainable development. Therefore; improving urban eco-efficiency in the lower reaches of the Yellow River ensures the implementation of ecological protection and high-quality development strategies in the Yellow River Basin. In this study; the dynamic changes of urban eco-efficiency and spatiotemporal differences in the lower reaches of the Yellow River were investigated using the Super-SBM (Super-Slack measure model) model with undesirable outputs and standard deviation ellipse. The STIRPAT (Stochastic Impacts by Regression Population; Affluence and Technology) model was introduced to analyze the factors affecting the change in urban eco-efficiency. The results showed that the overall urban eco-efficiency in the lower reaches of the Yellow River has not reached the optimal level. The overall eco-efficiency in the lower reaches of the Yellow River in Shandong Province was higher than that in Henan Province but the gap is narrowing. The spatial differentiation of urban eco-efficiency in the lower reaches of the Yellow River showed the following trends: “blooming in the middle and reverse development at both ends” in the high-value area and gradual decrease in the low-value area. From 2007 to 2018; a direction was notable with respect to the development of urban eco-efficiency in the lower reaches of the Yellow River; with the centripetal force weakening. Although the mean center of urban eco-efficiency located in Shandong Province; it notably shifted to the west during the study period. In terms of driving factors; affluence and technological progress play positive roles in driving eco-efficiency; while investment intensity; industrial structure; and foreign investment intensity hindered the optimization and improvement of urban eco-efficiency in the lower reaches of the Yellow River. The results of this study show that urban eco-efficiency in the lower reaches of the Yellow River is improving; but the regional coordination is poor. The main methods promoting the sustainable development in the study area include changing the mode of extensive investments and the introduction of foreign capital; which improve the energy efficiency and promote faster and better economic development.
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The current approaches to study the coupling mechanism between economy and environment seem to fall into self-circulation, failed to reveal “economy–environment interdependence”. In this context, an exogenous variable is introduced into these models for better understanding the relationship. Benzo[a]pyrene (Bap) environment inventories in different cities in China were estimated by fugacity model based on Bap concentration data collected from previous studies. An extended model, stochastic impacts by regression on population, affluence and technology (STIRPAT), generated from original IPAT (a model that expresses the idea that environmental impact (I) is the product of three factors: population (P), affluence (A) and technology (T)) was used to study the relationship between Bap environment inventory and anthropogenic factors including population, vehicle amount, affluence and energy consumption. A ridge regression has been applied to optimize the model parameters. Overall, there exist good relationships between Bap inventories and economic factors. Specifically, population and affluence are the most significant factors that influence Bap inventory. Rise of the scale of population and vehicle amount increases the Bap inventory, as growth of GDP per capita and the efficiency of energy utilization have inhibitory effect on Bap inventory. Apparently, the influences of anthropogenic factors on Bap inventory are different between north and south China. Bap inventory in north China is more sensitive to the change of population and energy consumption, while is highly correlated to GDP per capita in south China. Further, according to social-economic development prediction, with assist of the result from STIRPAT model, we find out that Bap inventory drop 31% from 2001 to 2020 in China. Our estimates are comparable with the published data and confirmed that Bap can be regarded as a chemical indicator of social-economic development in China.
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Most nations are predominately preoccupied with the need to increase economic growth amidst pressure for increased energy consumption. However, higher energy consumption from fossil fuel has its environmental implication(s) especially in a high industrial economy like China. In this context, the current study explores the interaction between pollutant emission, foreign direct investment, energy consumption, tourism arrival, and economic growth for quarterly frequency data from 1995Q1 to 2016Q4 for econometrics analysis. Pesaran’s autoregressive distributed lag–bound test traces long-run relationship between all outlined variables over the investigated period. Empirical results show positive relationship between pollutant emissions with all other variables with the exception of economic growth. This further exposes the environmental degradation in China with the curtailing strength from the GDP. The Granger causality analysis detects that CO2 emissions and energy consumption show a two-way causality observed. Also, one-way causality existing between growth and foreign direct investment is seen running to pollutant emission. Furthermore, one-way causality is observed among foreign direct investment, energy consumption, pollutant emission, and tourism arrivals with economic growth, and this established their impact on the economic growth which will be a guide to the policy implication on how to ameliorate environmental degradation from the effect of consumption of fossil energy sources and foreign direct investment–induced pollutant emission.
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The increased mercury content in a Greenland ice sheet over the last several decades suggests the dissemination of this element about the earth's atmosphere through the activities of man. The mercury content in the atmosphere appears to result primarily from the degassing of the earth's crust. Increased flux may come about as a result of the enhancement of this degassing process through the actions of man.
See also many other papers in this volume, as well as “Arid Lands in Transition
  • Carl O Sauer
Principles of Demography
  • E G See
  • J Donald
  • Bogue
The mercury discussion in this paragraph is based on information from “Man's Impact on the Global Environment
  • Herbert V Weiss
  • Minuro Koide
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Sinauer Assoc., 1971); and “Diversity and Stability in Ecological Systems
  • E O Wilson
  • W A Bossert