Energy consumption and CO2 emissions in Tibet and its cities in 2014

Yuli Shan, Heran Zheng, Dabo Guan, Chongmao Li, Zhifu Mi, Jing Meng, Jibo Ma, Heike Schroeder, Zhuguo Ma

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Because of its low level of energy consumption and the small scale of its industrial development, the Tibet Autonomous Region has historically been excluded from China's reported energy statistics, including those regarding CO2 emissions. In this paper, we estimate Tibet's energy consumption using limited online documents, and we calculate the 2014 energy-related and process-related CO2 emissions of Tibet and its seven prefecture-level administrative divisions for the first time. Our results show that 5.52 million tons of CO2 were emitted in Tibet in 2014; 33% of these emissions are associated with cement production. Tibet's emissions per capita amounted to 1.74 tons in 2014, which is substantially lower than the national average, although Tibet's emission intensity is relatively high at 0.60 tons per thousand yuan in 2014. Among Tibet's seven prefecture-level administrative divisions, Lhasa City and Shannan Region are the two largest CO2 contributors and have the highest per capita emissions and emission intensities. The Nagqu and Nyingchi regions emit little CO2 due to their farming/pasturing-dominated economies. This quantitative measure of Tibet's regional CO2 emissions provides solid data support for Tibet's actions on climate change and emission reductions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)854-864
Number of pages11
JournalEarth's Future
Issue number8
Early online date9 Aug 2017
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017


  • CO2 emissions
  • energy consumption
  • Tibet
  • cities

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