Relationship between built environment, socio-economic factors and carbon emissions from shopping trip in Shenyang City, China

Jing Li*, Tek Sheng Kevin LO, Pingyu Zhang, Meng Guo

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)


    Promoting active travel behavior and decreasing transport-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions have become a priority in many Chinese cities experiencing rapid urban sprawl and greater automobile dependence. However, there are few studies that holistically examine the physical and social factors associated with travel CO2 emissions. Using a survey of 1525 shoppers conducted in Shenyang, China, this study estimated shopping-related travel CO2 emissions and examined how the built environment and individual socioeconomic characteristics contribute to shopping travel behavior and associated CO2 emissions. We found that, firstly, private car trips generate nearly eight times more carbon emissions than shopping trips using public transport, on average. Second, there was significant spatial autocorrelation with CO2 emissions per trip, and the highest carbon emissions were clustered in the inner suburbs and between the first and second circumferential roads. Third, shopping travel CO2 emissions per trip were negatively correlated with several built environment features including population density, the quantity of public transport stations, road density, and shop density. They were also found to be significantly related to the individual socio-economic characteristics of car ownership, employment status, and education level using a multinomial logistic regression model. These empirical findings have important policy implications, assisting in the development of measures that contribute to the sustainability of urban transportation and meet carbon mitigation targets.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)722-734
    Number of pages13
    JournalChinese Geographical Science
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017

    Scopus Subject Areas

    • Geography, Planning and Development
    • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

    User-Defined Keywords

    • built environment
    • China
    • shopping trips
    • socio-economic factors
    • transport carbon emission
    • travel behavior


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