Impact of transportation infrastructure on industrial pollution in Chinese cities: A spatial econometric analysis

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Energy Economics, 2020, 92
Issue Date:
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© 2020 Elsevier B.V. Transportation infrastructure (TI) plays a critical role in China's economic growth, but its negative impacts on the environment have not been sufficiently addressed by the government. While studies of TI's impact on air pollution exist, there are few studies examining its impact on industrial pollution. This paper fills this gap by using the Spatial Durbin Model and balanced panel data from 280 of China's cities spanning 2003 to 2015. The results show that TI, represented by urban roads, aggravates the cities' industrial SO2 emissions, industrial soot (dust) emissions, and industrial wastewater over the long run. The channel analysis further shows that TI influences industrial pollution through industrial agglomeration, but not urbanization. TI has no direct effect on the industrial pollution of neighboring cities but does influence neighboring cities' industrial pollution through the spatial spillover effects of industrial agglomeration. Provincial policymakers and city planners should together pay more attention to the role of industrial agglomeration when designing economic policies to manage the negative effects of TI on the environment, and through cross-city cooperation develop means to reduce these effects.
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