Belfer Center Home > Publications > Academic Papers & Reports > Journal Articles > A Multi-regional Input–output Analysis of Domestic Virtual Water Trade and Provincial Water Footprint in China

EmailEmail   PrintPrint Bookmark and Share

 
"A Multi-regional Input–output Analysis of Domestic Virtual Water Trade and Provincial Water Footprint in China"

View of Chongqing from Chaotianmen, 25 October 2011. Chongqing's water footprint depends heavily on virtual water inflow from other provinces.
Wikipedia Commons CC

"A Multi-regional Input–output Analysis of Domestic Virtual Water Trade and Provincial Water Footprint in China"

Journal Article, Ecological Economics, volume 100, page 159–172

April 2014

Authors: Chao Zhang, Former Giorgio Ruffolo Fellow, Sustainability Science Program/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–July 2013, Laura Diaz Anadon, Assistant Professor of Public Policy; Associate Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program; Co-PI, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group

Belfer Center Programs or Projects: Energy Technology Innovation Policy; Environment and Natural Resources; Science, Technology, and Public Policy

 

ABSTRACT

China's booming economy has brought increasing pressures on its water resources. The water scarcity problem in China is characterized by a mismatch between the spatial distributions of water resources, economic development and other primary factors of production, which leads to the separation of production and consumption of water-intensive products. In this paper, we quantify the scale and structure of virtual water trade and consumption-based water footprints at the provincial level in China based on a multi-regional input–output model. We found that virtual water withdrawals and consumption embodied in domestic trade amounts to 184 billion m3 and 101 billion m3 in 2007, respectively, which is equivalent to 38% and 39% of national total fresh water withdrawals and consumption, respectively. Virtual water trade embodied in domestic trade is about two times as much as virtual water embodied in China's international exports. Water footprint in all four municipalities, i.e., Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai and Chongqing, depends heavily on virtual water inflow from other provinces. China has a north-to-south net VWT pattern which is roughly the opposite of the distribution of its water resources. In addition to water efficiency improvement measures, re-shaping the water-trade nexus can be a significant complementary tool to address local water scarcity problems.

 

Read the full text here (log in may be required): http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921800914000421

 

For more information about this publication please contact the ETIP Coordinator at 617-496-5584.

Full text of this publication is available at:
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921800914000421

For Academic Citation:

Zhang, Chao and Laura Diaz Anadon. "A Multi-regional Input–output Analysis of Domestic Virtual Water Trade and Provincial Water Footprint in China." Ecological Economics 100 (April 2014): 159–172.

Bookmark and Share

SUBSCRIBE

Receive email updates on the most pressing topics in science and int'l affairs.

<em>International Security</em>

The Fall 2014 Issue of the quarterly journal International Security
is now available!

Events Calendar

We host a busy schedule of events throughout the fall, winter and spring. Past guests include: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, former Vice President Al Gore, and former Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev.