JOURNAL OF NATURAL RESOURCES ›› 2013, Vol. 28 ›› Issue (1): 19-27.doi: 10.11849/zrzyxb.2013.01.003

• Resources Utilization and Management • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Environmental Kuznets Curve of Resource-based Cities in China—An Empirical Research Based on Panel Data

LI Hui-juan1,2, LONG Ru-yin1   

  1. 1. School of Management, China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou 221116, China;
    2. School of Economy, Xuzhou Institute of Technology, Xuzhou 221006, China
  • Received:2011-11-14 Revised:2012-05-15 Online:2013-01-20 Published:2013-01-19


Resource-based cities are a kind of special cities which have developed with the exploration of natural resources, and their resource-based industries account for a large share in the economy. In China, there are 118 resource-based cities which have made momentous contributions to the nation's development for decades. In general, industrial production makes economic growth, as well as environmental pollution. The higher the share of secondary sector in GDP is, the more pollution emission. The average of share of secondary sector in GDP in resource-based cities is ten percentage points higher than that in all prefecture-level cities. The pollution in resource-based cities is also more serious than that in these cities. With industrial dust, industrial waste water and industrial SO2 as examples, this paper tests the relationship between environmental pollution and economic growth of 47 prefecture-level resource-based cities from 2003 to 2009 using Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) model. The result shows that three pollutants are significant at 1% or 5% level of significance. Here, the EKC of dust emission shows N-shaped. The turning points are 1750 and 39287 yuan of GDP per capita. But 1750 yuan is out of the sample. In 2010, the GDP per capita is less than 39287 yuan in most resource-based cities. Per capita dust emission decreases with the increase of GDP per capita in most resource-based cities in the past several years, but will increase in the future. It shows that economic growth is not decoupling with dust pollutant. The EKCs of waste water and SO2 show inverted U-shaped pattern, which is consistent with the general findings of the relation between economic growth and environmental pollution. The turning points are 8371 and 16893 yuan respectively. Herein, 8371 yuan is at the right part of waste water EKC in more than half of these resource-based cities, while 16893 yuan is at the right part of SO2 EKC in just a quarter of them. In addition, we find that category of resources influence the shapes and turning points of EKC in resource-based cities. Pollutants have various shapes of EKC in different kinds of resource-based cities. Turning points would come early in cities which polluted seriously and have low GDP per capita. Compared with the whole country, resource-based cities have earlier turning point if there are similar EKC. Finally, some recommendations are offered to improve the sustainable development of resource-based cities such as taking environmental treatments, carrying out green transformation, developing circular economy and enlarging the overall control.

Key words: resource-based cities, Environmental Kuznets Curve, panel data, environmental pollution, economic growth

CLC Number: 

  • F293