CO2 emissions embodied in international trade and domestic final demand

Methodology and results using the OECD Inter-Country Input-Output Database

This paper describes the sources and methods used to estimate carbon emissions embodied in final demand and international gross trade for 65 economies over the period 2005-2015. Earlier OECD analyses of carbon footprints, accounting for global production networks, helped raise awareness of divergences between territorial and resident principles, and between production-based and consumption-based carbon emissions. Understanding the differences in these measures is important for governments to better understand and address greenhouse gas mitigation options. Thus, a new refined methodology was applied to allocate territorial emissions to production-based emissions (industries and households) using OECD Inter-Country Input-Output tables and International Energy Agency (IEA) CO2 emissions from fuel combustion statistics. In particular, this methodology introduces: 1) explicit distinctions between territorial and resident principles, economic output and final demand-based emissions and emissions embodied in gross imports and exports; 2) estimates by major fuel combustion sources; and 3) fuel purchases by non-resident industries and households.

Available from November 23, 2020

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