Regional efforts to mitigate climate change in China: a multi-criteria assessment approach

  • Zhi-Fu Mi
  • Yi-Ming Wei
  • Chen-Qi He
  • Hua-Nan Li
  • Xiao-Chen Yuan
  • Hua Liao
Original Article


The task of mitigating climate change is usually allocated through administrative regions in China. In order to put pressure on regions that perform poorly in mitigating climate changes and highlight regions with best-practice climate policies, this study explored a method to assess regional efforts on climate change mitigation at the sub-national level. A climate change mitigation index (CCMI) was developed with 15 objective indicators, which were divided into four categories, namely, emissions, efficiency, non-fossil energy, and climate policy. The indicators’ current level and recent development were measured for the first three categories. The index was applied to assess China’s provincial performance in climate protection based on the Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) method. Empirical results show that the middle Yangtze River area and southern coastal area perform better than other areas in mitigating climate change. The average performance of the northwest area in China is the worst. In addition, climate change mitigation performance has a negative linear correlation with energy self-sufficiency ratio but does not have a significant linear correlation with social development level. Therefore, regional resource endowments had better be paid much more attention in terms of mitigating climate change because regions with good resource endowments in China tend to perform poorly.


Carbon efficiency Climate policy Energy efficiency Mitigation efforts Non-fossil energy TOPSIS 



The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the “Strategic Priority Research Program” of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (XDA05150600), National Natural Science Foundation of China (71020107026, 71273031). We are also grateful to colleagues from Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research (CEEP) at Beijing Institute of Technology for helpful suggestions.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zhi-Fu Mi
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yi-Ming Wei
    • 1
    • 2
  • Chen-Qi He
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hua-Nan Li
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiao-Chen Yuan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hua Liao
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Center for Energy and Environmental Policy ResearchBeijing Institute of TechnologyBeijingChina
  2. 2.Collaborative Innovation Center of Electric Vehicles in BeijingBeijingChina

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