An international comparison analysis of CO2 emissions in the construction industry

Jindao Chen, Yuhong Wang, Qian Shi, Xu Peng, Juhuan Zheng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Global warming is an increasingly serious issue faced by human beings. As one of the largest contributors to global CO2 emissions, the construction industry plays a significant role in combating global warming and achieving sustainable development. This study aimed to compare the CO2 emissions in the construction industry around the world and analyze the drivers of the differences in construction emission intensities between regions in 2009 using the multiregional input–output model and structural decomposition analysis model, respectively. The results show that China, India, the USA, Russia, and Japan were the largest five construction CO2 emitters. The above five regions, especially China and Russia, had much greater construction emission intensities than the UK, which had the smallest intensity. The findings also demonstrate that the production structure effect was the largest driver enlarging the intensity differences between China and the UK, between India and the UK, between Russia and the UK, and between Japan and the UK, contributing 93.1%, 96.6%, 65.6%, and 85.3% of the differences, respectively. The energy intensity effect dominated the emission intensity difference between the USA and the UK, representing 101.6% of the difference. The top three contributors to the above effects were domestic industries except the production structure effect on the difference between Japan and the UK. This study can help policymakers better understand the disparities of CO2 emissions in the construction industry around the world and thus formulate effective policies to mitigate the emissions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)754-767
Number of pages14
JournalSustainable Development
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2021


  • carbon emissions
  • construction industry
  • input–output analysis
  • international comparison
  • sustainable development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Development

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