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[en] From the perspective of corporate social responsibility and environmental risk management, green credit will have an important impact on corporate performance. The influence of green credit policy on enterprises can be reflected by the borrowing ability and financing cost of the enterprises, which represent the support strength and price preference of green credit policy. Based on this, this paper considers data on long-term borrowing capacity, short-term borrowing capacity, corporate social responsibility report score, and assets’ return rate of 119 listed enterprises of mining, power, and steel industries in China, from 2010 to 2016, and uses a panel data model to estimates the general relationship between the corporate social responsibility, green credit, and corporate performance. We find that: First, taking the social responsibility can promote the enterprises’ long-term borrowing ability and reduce their financing cost, but it can inhibit their short-term borrowing ability. With a 1% improvement in corporate social responsibility score, the long-term borrowing ability of enterprises in three industries will be increased by 0.0867, 0.2688, and 0.0510%, respectively. Second, the positive undertaking of corporate social responsibility will promote the improvement in enterprise performance. The result of enterprise performance improvement for the sample industry is 0.05, 0.03, and 0.07%. Third, the long-term borrowing ability of enterprise green credit has a small promoting effect on the enterprises’ performance, with the coefficients being 0.1266, 0.0539, and 0.0306, respectively. This paper can be used as a reference to promote both implementation of green credit policy and corporate performance.
[en] The process of the production of multi-crystalline silicon is also that of incessant purification of metallurgical grade silicon, during which high energy consumption and environmental pollutants are inevitable. The paper, which is based on life cycle assessment (LCA), presents calculation and analysis on resource input, energy consumption, emissions into and comprehensive impact on environment generated from the whole process in which 1 kg of solar grade multi-crystalline silicon (SoG-Si) is produced with metallurgical route. The program is based on its research on four representative processes in metallurgical route, namely slag refining, wet purification, directional solidification and electron beam melting. Key factors determining environmental load are sought out through contribution analysis and improvement evaluation. Measures and suggestions on how to improve are proposed. For the first time, the LCA model of comparison of metallurgical route and modified Siemens process to SoG-Si environmental impact is constructed. The environmental impacts of SoG-Si production via metallurgical route is compared with purification via modified Siemens process. Results show that the comprehensive environmental impact of metallurgical route SoG-Si is only 49.57% of modified Siemens process SoG-Si. The metallurgical route enjoys obvious environmental advantage. The improvement should be focused on the reduction of electric power consumption in production processes.
[en] With large-scale application of a large number of renewable energy sources, such as wind turbines, photovoltaics, and various power electronic equipment, the power electric system is becoming gradually more power-electronics-based, whose dynamical behavior becomes much complicated, compared to that of traditional power system. The recent developed theory of amplitude–phase motion equation provides a new framework for the general dynamic analysis of such a system. Based on this theory, we study a simple amplitude–phase motion equation, i.e., a single power-electronics device connected to an infinite-large system, but consider its nonlinear effect. With extensive and intensive theoretical analysis and numerical simulation, we find that basically the system shows some similarity with the classical second-order swing equation for a synchronous generator connected to an infinite bus, such as the two types of bifurcation including the saddle-node bifurcation and homoclinic bifurcation, and the dynamical behavior of stable fixed point, stable limit cycle, and their coexistence. In addition, we find that the Hopf bifurcation is possible, but for negative damping only. All these findings are expected to be helpful for further study of power-electronics-based power system, featured with nonlinearity of high-dimensional dynamic systems involved with not only a large timescale but also large space scale.
[en] As Beijing put forward its “one core, two wings” development plan, the development and construction in the Beijing Tongzhou District have turned into a national strategy. However, as a municipal district, energy and CO2 emission data and other statistics are difficult to obtain in Tongzhou and CO2 emissions accounting for a district at this level is rare. This study applies the accounting method of city carbon emissions to the district level. Firstly, we account for the CO2 emissions in the Tongzhou District from 2008 to 2015 according to data availability. Secondly, by using the logarithmic mean Divisa index decomposition approach, the Tongzhou CO2 emissions are decomposed into six main driving factors, including population, per capita GDP, industrial structure, energy intensity, energy consumption structure, and energy-related CO2 emission factors. The result shows that (1) from 2008 to 2015, the CO2 emissions in the Tongzhou District first increased and then decreased and peaked in 2011. (2) Population and per capita GDP both contributed to the change in CO2 emissions in the Tongzhou District during the study period and resulted in 407,200 tons and 346,200 tons increase, respectively. The industrial structure, energy consumption intensity, and energy structure exerted inhibiting effects, offsetting 29,300 tons, 571,500 tons, and 29,300 tons, respectively, and the energy consumption intensity was the most important factor. (3) On this basis, we discuss the annual effects of the driving factors. The results of this study provide great significance and references for research in order to implement the low-carbon development and the “one core, two wings” strategy in the Tongzhou District.
[en] Energy savings can be treated as an indicator to reveal the effectiveness of energy efficiency task (EET) in the building sector, especially in the public buildings. However, evaluating the values of energy savings in public buildings (ESPB) was challenged by the missing data sources and inadequate tools in China. To overcome these problems, this study applied an extended Logarithmic Mean Divisia Index model to examine the contributions of different impact factors affecting the public building energy consumption (PBEC) and further evaluated the ESPB values during the 10th–12th Five-Year Plan (FYP) periods in China. Results included three aspects: (1) Absolute values of the contribution of the adjusted PBEC intensity to PBEC denoted the ESPB values in China. (2) Total values of ESPB were 99.9 Mtce during the 10th–12th FYP periods of China. Concretely, the ESPB values during the three FYP periods were as follows: 71.091 Mtce (the 12th FYP period), 19.075 Mtce (the 11th FYP period), and 9.734 Mtce (the 10th FYP period). (3) Effective EET of public buildings was a strong support for the rapidly growing ESPB during the three FYP periods. Furthermore, this study suggested that China should issue the official data on energy consumption in the building sector as quickly as possible, and this action would deeply help the government design targeted plans and policies for the future EET in the building sector.
[en] We performed large-scale earthquake economic loss estimations for France and cost–benefit analyses for several French cities by developing a semiempirical, intensity-based approach. The proposed methodology is inexpensive and easily applicable in case of a paucity of detailed information regarding the specific regional seismic hazard and the structural characteristics of the building stock, which is of particular importance in moderate-to-low seismic hazard regions. The exposure model is derived from census datasets, and the seismic vulnerability distribution of buildings is calculated using data mining techniques. Several hypothetical, large-scale retrofit scenarios are proposed, with increasing levels of investment. These cities, in their respective reinforced states, are then subjected to a series of hazard scenarios. Seismic hazard data for different return periods are calculated from regulatory accelerations from French seismic zoning. Loss estimations for the original (non-reinforced) configuration show high levels of expected building repair and replacement costs for all time spans. Finally, the benefits in terms of damage avoidance are compared with the costs of each retrofit measure. Relatively limited strengthening investments reduce the probability of building collapse, which is the main cause of human casualties. However, the results of this study suggest that retrofitting is, on average, only cost-effective in the parts of France with the highest seismicity and over the longest time horizons.
[en] The electric power network is considered to be critical infrastructure. Electric utility companies and electric power administrators are increasingly interested in strengthening the security and resilience of their networks against earthquakes. Important components of these networks are high-voltage electrical transformers. Earlier studies in the use of seismic isolation systems for electrical transformers and other equipment produced results that clearly show the benefits of seismic isolation in the horizontal direction. However, vertical ground motions were transmitted through the isolation system unchanged or even magnified. In response to this problem, this paper presents the development and validation of a compact, effective, reliable and cost-effective combined horizontal–vertical seismic isolation system for use in electrical equipment.
[en] This paper adopts an ex-post regulatory impact assessment (RIA) to analyze the effects of Law no.194/2009 on public-private partnerships (PPP) in the water sector in Portugal. Although the water services have been improving concerning coverage and safety since 1990, any change in regulation can have both “positive and negative” consequences either for customers, providers or local governments. This context can provide the opportunity to observe a national experiment of regulatory reform and assess its outcomes based on the following multiple targets: (i) customer protection; (ii) governance; (iii) financial, infrastructure and operational sustainability; and (iv) environmental improvement. To evaluate the impact of this legal reform, three steps were considered: (i) the status quo, scenarios and perspective; (ii) assessment; and (iii) consultation. Additionally, two aid methods were used: (i) expert opinions (Delphi) and (ii) multicriteria decision modelling method (TOPSIS) based on similarity distance to ideal solution. In fact, Law no.194/2009 reduced the gap in terms of performance between the concessions, but amplified the contrasts when all perspectives are compared. Regarding policy objectives, the major gap to overcome in a possible review of this legal framework is linked to the “economic-financial, operational and infrastructural sustainability objective”. Failures in any of these aspects can result in an ongoing PPP not meeting customer, municipality and concessionaire’s expectations.
[en] This study uses the total-factor energy productivity change index (TFEPCH) to investigate the changes in energy productivity of construction industry for 30 provincial regions in China from 2006 to 2015, adopting the improved Luenberger productivity index combined with the directional distance function. In addition to traditional economic output indicator, this study introduces building floor space under construction as a physical output indicator for energy productivity evaluation. The TFEPCH was decomposed into energy technical efficiency change and energy technical progress shift. Results indicate that, first, energy productivity of China’s construction industry decreased by 7.1% annually during 2006–2015. Energy technical regress, rather than energy technical efficiency, contributed most to the overall decline in energy productivity of China’s construction industry. Second, energy productivity in the central region of China decreased dramatically, by a cumulative sum of approximately 77.1%, since 2006, while energy productivity in the eastern and western regions decreased by over 54.3 and 65.3%, respectively. Only two of the 30 provinces considered—Hebei and Shandong—improved their energy productivity during 2006–2015. The findings presented here provide a basis for decision-making and references for administrative departments to set differentiated energy efficiency goals and develop relevant measures. Additionally, the findings are highly significant for energy and resource allocation of Chinese construction industry in different regions.
[en] Multi-agent system employs the functions of communication, coordination and cooperation among intelligent agents to help people judge and analyze complex phenomena that cannot be directly observed, and it has become an important tool for solving large-scale complex problems. The problem of demand response (DR) in electric power system is difficult to be modeled due to the complicated environment and continuously evolving subjects. Multi-agent system can simulate the operation mechanism of electric power system, thus playing an important role in solving the DR problems. In this study, based on multi-agent simulation, we establish a multi-agent model of residential power market and propose a satisfaction function of residential users about electricity price. We focus on the interaction process among all the agents of power supply side, selling side and demand side and conduct simulation to obtain the selection and decision-making of residential users on different electricity pricing schemes. The results show that multi-agent system is beneficial to analyze, simulate and solve the DR problem in power market. Also, the satisfaction function of residential users on electricity price can support power selling enterprise to better understand the intention of residential users when choosing electricity pricing schemes and participating in DR program.