This paper identifies three types of model environmental cities in China and examines their levels of energy-related carbon emissions using a bottom-up accounting system. Model environmental cities are identified as those that have been recently awarded official recognition from the central government for their efforts in environmental protection. The findings show that, on average, the Low-Carbon Cities have lower annual carbon emissions, carbon intensities, and per capita emissions than the Eco-Garden Cities and the Environmental Protection Cities. Compared internationally, the Eco-Garden Cities and the Environmental Protection Cities have per capita emissions that are similar to those of American cities whereas per capita emissions from the Low-Carbon Cities are similar to those of European cities. The result indicates that addressing climate change is not a priority for some model environmental cities. Policy changes are needed to prioritize climate mitigation in these cities, considering that climate change is a cross-cutting environmental issue with wide-ranging impact.