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The Regulatory Framework and Sustainable Development of China's Electricity Sector*

  • Yin-Fang Zhang (a1)

Both supply- and demand-oriented solutions are important in cleaning up the electricity sector. However, their successful deployment calls for the removal of various barriers. This paper looks at China's electricity industry, one of the world's largest emitters of greenhouse gases, by relating the regulatory framework to the environmental dimension of sustainable electricity development. It develops an analytical framework by drawing upon the literature on the deployment of supply- and demand-side solutions, regulatory governance, and environmental policy integration. The paper finds that, in China's electricity sector, environmental considerations are subordinate to economic and development goals in policymaking and enforcement. Under the current regulatory framework, regulatory policies/instruments are not conducive to removing barriers to the effective deployment of the solutions.


解决电力行业的污染问题需要使用供给与需求双方面的措施。但是, 这些措施的成功使用面临许多障碍。本文将注意力放在中国的电力行业, 把该行业的监管体制与其在解决污染问题中所遇到的挑战和困难联系起来。分析中使用的理论框架取材于监管治理, 供需方减排措施, 及环境政策一体化方面的文献。分析结果表明, 在中国电力工业的政策制定与执行的过程中, 经济和发展目标是第一位, 而环境方面的考量处于从属地位。 目前的监管体制恰恰就是服务于这样一个决策定位。因此, 在这样的监管体制下所制定和采取的监管政策与手段不利于清除减排措施所面临的障碍。

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The research on which this paper is based was funded by the British Academy Small Research Grant SG-54112. The views expressed are the author's and do not necessarily reflect those of the funding organization.

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