Does energy price induce China’s green energy innovation?

Yue Liu, Siming Liu, Xueying Xu, Pierre Failler

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Abstract

This paper aims to comprehensively analyze the relationship between energy price and green energy innovation in China, and first studies the impact of energy price on China’s green energy innovation, then further investigates the moderating role of energy price distortion in the price–innovation relationship, especially in the context of lagging energy marketization level in the process of China’s transition from planned economy to the market economy. Based on the data of 30 provinces in China from 2003 to 2017, this paper provides a measurement of green energy innovation capacity through the number of “alternative energy production” and “energy conservation” patents. Our results show that energy price has a significantly positive impact on China’s green energy innovation, no matter the number of green energy patent applications or the number of green energy patent grants is used as the proxy of green energy innovation capacity. However, there exists heterogeneity related to the influence of energy price on green energy innovation. Specifically, energy price has a noticeable role in promoting green energy innovation in central and western China, but not in eastern China. Further research results show that energy price distortion significantly reduces the inducing effect of energy price on green energy innovation. Meanwhile, the distortion degrees of energy price in the central and western regions of China are significantly lower than that in the eastern region, which explains to a large extent why the inducing effect of energy price on innovation is more prominent in the central and western regions.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4034
JournalEnergies
Volume13
Issue number15
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Aug 2020

Keywords

  • energy price
  • green energy innovation
  • energy price distortion
  • patent

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