The city within the global: a framework for the simultaneous estimation of city emissions metrics

Grant Allan, Kevin Connolly, Aditya Maurya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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In line with national targets, sub-national governments – including cities – are introducing targets to reduce the emissions associated with economic activity within or associated with a particular geography. Cities are important drivers of not only emissions but also economic activity and are embedded into complex economic systems which reach beyond their boundaries, which can raise major issues in identifying whether a city is assisting in promoting sustainability across a wider spatial level. This paper sets out a methodology to downscale global Input Output tables to city-level and use these to calculate production- (territorial) and consumption-based carbon accounts at the city level simultaneously. Illustrating this for the case of Glasgow, Scotland, we show that the city's territorial emissions are significantly lower than its consumption-based carbon footprint (considering both the Areal and Personal Carbon Footprint), but that both metrics are sensitive to assumptions about the emissions intensity of individual sectors. Our results highlight the importance of data quality and accuracy, and the benefits of local knowledge, rather than the unquestioned use of national metrics.
Original languageEnglish
Article number139323
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Early online date23 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2023


  • consumption-based carbon accounting
  • production-based carbon accounts
  • multi-region input-output
  • territorial emissions
  • cities


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