Critical Issues in Environmental Taxation series
Edited by Larry Kreiser, Ana Yábar Sterling, Pedro Herrera, Janet E. Milne and Hope Ashiabor
Chapter 13: Determinants of willingness to pay for emissions reduction: a comparative study of Japan and South Korea
The annual carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of three East Asian countries – China, Japan, and South Korea (hereafter, Korea) – accounted for approximately one- third of world emissions in 2008; those countries’ emissions were about 8.1, 1.6 and 10 times greater, respectively, than in 1971. According to the Institute of Energy Economics, Japan (IEEJ 2011), the world’s energy- related CO2 emissions will be 44.9 GtCO2 in 2035, a 1.5- fold increase from 2008. CO2 emissions in Asia will account for 56 per cent of world emissions in 2035, compared to 45 per cent in 2008. This is based on high economic growth and a more energy- intensive lifestyle. Thus, it is necessary to reduce and control CO2 emissions in Asia by means of cooperation amongst countries in Asia and the world. In the context of the reduction of CO2 emissions, policymakers in both Korea and Japan have focused on industry sectors rather than households. However, household CO2 emissions in Japan and Korea are almost 17 and 14 per cent, respectively, of total emissions in these countries, and CO2 emissions in three lifestyle- related sectors – household, commercial and transportation – account for almost 52 and 43 per cent, respectively, of total emissions. This indicates that major effort is needed to reduce emissions in all sectors. Thus, ‘Low- Carbon Society’ policies encouraging sustainable consumption have been introduced in both countries.
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