The green growth economy as an engine of development: the case of China

John A. Mathews*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Is green growth feasible and possible – or does it remain a contradiction, an impossibly ambitious or (worse) a delusionary goal? If viewed solely from the perspective of the advanced countries, it might indeed seem contradictory. But when considered as a serious goal for an industrializing country, it proves to be an attractive option that delivers economic growth (and with it, rising prosperity) without subjecting the country to the environmental and geopolitical costs associated with black (fossil-fuelled) growth. The case of China is exemplary in demonstrating this, because (1) China is embarked on the biggest industrialization ever before witnessed; (2) China is being forced by circumstance to find an alternative to black (coal-driven) industrialization; and (3) China’s model – best described as one of strategic pursuit of green growth – is delivering economic benefits while also promising to restrain and eventually reduce carbon emissions.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook on green growth
EditorsRoger Fouquet
Place of PublicationCheltenham, UK
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781788110686
ISBN (Print)9781788110679
Publication statusPublished - 2019


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