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Decomposition Analysis of CO2 Emissions from Coal - Sourced Electricity Production in South Africa

Category: Control Techniques and Strategy

Volume: 17 | Issue: 4 | Pages: 1043-1051
DOI: 10.4209/aaqr.2016.11.0477
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Mohamed Beidari1, Sue-Jane Lin 1, Charles Lewis2

  • 1 Department of Environmental Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan 701, Taiwan
  • 2 Department of Resources Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan 701, Taiwan


Coal-sourced of electricity production related to CO2 emissions of South Africa.
Key factors affecting CO2 emission from electricity sector by the LMDI method.
Economic activity is the dominant factor to the increase of CO2 emissions.
Electricity generation intensity is the major to the decrease of CO2 emissions.


In 2013, the electricity sector was the largest source of South Africa’s CO2 emissions, accounting for about 60% of its total. South Africa (SA) is one of the highest CO2 emitters on a per capita basis when compared to many developed and developing countries. For a better understanding of the driving forces leading the electricity-related CO2 emission per person, this paper applies the Log Mean Divisia Index (LMDI) to analyze the influence of the factors which ruled electricity generation-related CO2 emission in SA over the period 1990–2013. We focused on coal which is the dominant fuel used in SA for electricity generation. The results show that the electricity generation intensity effect plays the dominant role in decreasing CO2 emissions. However, the effect of economic activity is the major determinant that contributes to increasing CO2 emissions. In order to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions levels, meet the agreement of the COP21 agreement, and fight against CO2 emissions per-capita associated with electricity generation, it is recommended that SA’s government should improve the efficiency of its existing electricity power generation plants and expand more of its renewable energy sources (nuclear included).


Carbon dioxide Coal consumption Electricity generation LMDI method

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