Resources Science ›› 2017, Vol. 39 ›› Issue (8): 1444-1456.doi: 10.18402/resci.2017.08.02

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Influence of development of China's ‘four modernizations’ on energy intensity

Biao LI1(), Changxu SONG1, Jia WU2(), Bo WU3   

  1. 1. School of Economics,Southwestern University of Finance and Economics,Chengdu 611130,China
    2. School of Economics,Jinan University,Guangzhou 510632,China
    3. Institution of Economy and Social Development Research,Party School of Chongqing Committee of C.P.C.,Chongqing 400041,China
  • Received:2016-11-06 Revised:2017-04-12 Online:2017-08-20 Published:2017-08-20


Establishing a new path of development in order to realize four modernizations (urbanization,industrialization,informatization and agricultural modernization)implies energy-saving. Simple indices such as urbanization rate or the fraction of industrial added value in GDP have been the focus of previous research. Simple construction of the indices cannot reflect new pattern development of the four modernizations. The implication of the new-pattern means other factors,such as energy consumption,environmental disruption and conservation need to be considered. This study investigated the effects of new pattern development of the four modernizations on energy intensity in order to assess the regional development of China,employing provincial level data from 2011 to 2014. First,we constructed four new type indices using principal component analysis and then presented the distribution of the indices among 30 provinces of China. The results show that the development of the four modernizations basically coincides with the economic development of China. Then,we use panel data model to estimate the effect of four new type indices on energy intensity. The results show that the development of new-type urbanization,informatization and agricultural modernization significantly improve energy intensity (i.e. decrease the energy consumption per production). However,we show that the impact of new-type industrialization on energy intensity is minor. In addition,the marginal contribution of the new-type index has a decreasing effect on energy intensity. Specifically,improving one facet of the four modernizations will have minor effect on energy intensity under high-development of the other three dimensions of modernization. These results indicate that the effect of modernization on energy intensity will be convergent at some point. Therefore,it is very important to decrease China's energy intensity by improving regional resource allocation efficiency and the new pattern four modernizations of underdeveloped provinces.

Key words: new-pattern urbanization, new-pattern industrialization, informatization, agricultural modernization, energy intensity, system generalized method of moments