Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 23, Issue 16, pp 16115–16126 | Cite as

The sheer scale of China’s urban renewal and CO2 emissions: multiple structural breaks, long-run relationship, and short-run dynamics

  • Khalid AhmedEmail author
Research Article


In the light of urban environmental transition (UET) theory, this study explores the relationship between carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, economic growth, urbanization, and trade openness using updated Chinese data over the extended period (1971–2013). After confirming that all the underlying series are stationary and adjusted with single structural break point, the results of autoregressive distributed lag (ARDL) bounds test approach to cointegration confirm the cointegration between the variables. The long- and short-run dynamics reveal that urbanization reduces the CO2 emissions both in short and long runs, but statistically insignificant. These findings contrast with previous literature and sound the validation of urban environmental transition theory (UET). However, economic growth and trade openness contribute environmental degradation both in long- and short-run paths. The causality analysis reports bidirectional causal link between trade openness and urbanization in the short run. However, in the long-run, economic growth Granger causes carbon dioxide emissions, urbanization, and trade openness. Similarly, trade openness Granger causes carbon dioxide emissions, economic growth, and urbanization in the long run. The overall results imply that rural to urban immigration is still mostly driven by export-related manufacturing sectors. In addition, the higher GDP also contributes to urbanization as a feedback effect. In the end, stability of the model is also checked, model found stable, and findings are suitable for environmental policy control use.


Carbon dioxide Urbanization Long-run dynamics Multiple structural breaks Bounds test China 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sukkur Institute of Business AdministrationSukkurPakistan

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