Research Articles

A study of provincial differences in China’s eco-compensation framework

  • LIU Chunla , 1, 2 ,
  • LIU Weidong 2 ,
  • LU Dadao 2 ,
  • CHEN Mingxing , 2 ,
  • XU Mei 3
  • 1. Department of Resources and Environment Science, Hunan Normal University, Changsha 410008, China
  • 2. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
  • 3. School of Tourism, Central South University of Forestry and Technology, Changsha 410004, China

Author: Liu Chunla, PhD, specialized in economic geography and regional development. E-mail:

*Corresponding author: Chen Mingxing, PhD and Associate Professor, E-mail:

Received date: 2016-08-02

  Accepted date: 2016-09-29

  Online published: 2017-04-10

Supported by

National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41601143, No.41671125, No.41125005

The Foundation of Humanities and Social Sciences of the Ministry of Education, No.16YJC840012

The Philosophy and Social Science Foundation of Hunan Province, No.15YBA273

The Science and Technology Planning Project of Hunan Province, No.2016SK2019


Journal of Geographical Sciences, All Rights Reserved


In this study, we developed a theoretical framework to analyze the provincial differences in eco-compensation and selected appropriate measurement methods to investigate these differences in the operation of the eco-compensation framework. Via the use of the coefficient of variation, Atkinson index, and Gini coefficient, we investigated the overall differences in Chinese provincial eco-compensation time series data from 2004 to 2014 and studied the driving mechanism underlying these differences. The results showed that: (1) The provincial eco-compensation standard has geographical features. For example, the provinces crossed by the “HU Huanyong Line”, or located to its northwestern side, have obtained extensive eco-compensation. (2) There was a trend for differences in eco-compensation to increase over time, but with some fluctuations in 2006, 2009, and 2014 as shown by the coefficient of variation, in 2005, 2007, 2011, 2013, and 2014 as shown by the Gini coefficient, and in 2007, 2008, 2011, and 2012 as shown by the Atkinson index. (3) Time series curves indicated that while the signals from the three metrics (coefficient of variation, Atkinson index, and Gini coefficient) differ in a short-term analysis, they show the same tendency in the longer term. The results indicate that it is necessary to evaluate the differences in eco-compensation at the provincial level over a long period of time. (4) Via the calculation of the virtual Gini coefficient, we found that among the factors that influence provincial differences in eco-compensation, the economic value of eco-resources played the decisive role, explaining more than 73% of the difference. The cost of environmental pollution abatement was the second most important factor, accounting for more than 19% of the difference. The input to environmental pollution abatement had the least influence, accounting for less than 8% of the difference. The results agreed with those obtained from other studies, and could be used as a reference by policy makers.

Cite this article

LIU Chunla , LIU Weidong , LU Dadao , CHEN Mingxing , XU Mei . A study of provincial differences in China’s eco-compensation framework[J]. Journal of Geographical Sciences, 2017 , 27(2) : 240 -256 . DOI: 10.1007/s11442-017-1374-8

1 Introduction

Eco-compensation is an important issue for ecologists, resource scholars, geographers, and government managers in China and overseas (SDSRG, ACCA, 2007; ACCA, 2012; Xie et al., 2015; Liu et al., 2016). There have been many studies of eco-compensation schemes and their differences (Salzman et al., 2000; Boyd et al., 2007; Wünscher et al., 2008; Yang et al., 2007; Qin et al., 2007; Yuan et al., 2014; Liu et al., 2015). Outside of China, eco-compensation is referred to as payment for ecosystem services (PES) or payment for ecological benefits (PEB). International studies of differences in eco-compensation have focused on the aspects of natural environment eco-compensation, the spatio-temporal distribution of eco-compensation, and human and economic eco- compensation. Studies of differences in natural environment eco-compensation frameworks are at an early stage overseas, and have mostly focused on plant tolerance to herbivory and its eco-compensation. For example, the differences in the eco-compensation provided for plants damaged from herbivores have been considered (Strauss et al., 1999), as has the impact of herbivory on different plants used as natural resources, and a comparison of the problems inherent in eco-compensation has been attempted (Hawkes et al., 2001). The spatial and temporal distribution of eco-compensation is an important research focus. For example, modeling procedures have been used to design compensation payments for the efficient spatio-temporal allocation of species protection measures (Johst et al., 2002), and spatially uniform versus spatially heterogeneous compensation payments have been considered for biodiversity-enhancing land-use measures (Wätzold et al., 2005). Human and economic eco-compensation and the differences between each framework have been an important focus of international studies in recent years. Such studies have considered the institutional dimensions of payments for ecosystem services (Corbera et al., 2009), eco-compensation scope and equity implications (Börner et al., 2010; Wunder et al., 2008), and payments for ecosystem services as commodity fetishism and the differences in such payments (Kosoy et al., 2010).
In China, studies of the differences in eco-compensation schemes have mainly focused on differences in the eco-compensation standard, stakeholders, and the type and mechanism of compensation. Some studies of the differences in eco-compensation standards have been based on questionnaire surveys of the willingness to pay for eco-compensation (Li et al., 2011; Yang et al., 2012), method modeling (Zhang et al., 2010; Ma et al., 2012), and related comparative studies (Xiong et al., 2004; Chen, 2011). There are large differences in the various eco-compensation standards in use worldwide. For the same objective, if different measures are adopted, there are different standards in use. Studies of the differences in types of eco-compensation have mostly focused on river basin eco-compensation (Ruan et al., 2008), forest eco-compensation (Li et al., 2007), and regional eco-compensation (Li et al., 2009; Xu et al., 2015). Studies of the differences in eco-compensation mechanisms have referred to the type of eco-compensation mechanism (Jiang, 2010), and have subdivided the type of eco-compensation, as well as designing plans to implement the various schemes (Huang et al., 2010). Studies of the differences in the subjects of interest in specific eco-compensation schemes have involved detailed comparisons of these subjects (Li et al., 2011), and the spatial selection of eco-compensation objectives (Dai, 2010). Moreover, many researchers have undertaken comprehensive analyses of these problems, and compared the differences between schemes.
Provincial differences in eco-compensation are an important aspect of eco-compensation, and are closely related to regional development and ecological construction (Zhao et al., 2010; Ding et al., 2012; Wu et al., 2003). In China, it is necessary and feasible to conduct investigations of provincial eco-compensation. Provincial eco-compensation (inter-regional eco-compensation) can not only advance the coordinated development of regional economies (Hu et al., 2007; Wang et al., 2010), but also promote eco-environmental protection during regional development (Ding et al., 2008). At the same time, to solve the development issues in various types of restricted and forbidden development zones in the main functional areas of China, we need to promote regional eco-compensation at different scales (Ding et al., 2012). Regional eco-compensation is critical at state level. There have been quantitative studies of provincial eco-compensation based on economics, ecological value equivalents, and other related factors (Song et al., 2010; Jin, 2009; Cai et al., 2005; Liu et al., 2014; Wang et al., 2011; Wu et al., 2013). In practice, it is feasible to conduct provincial eco-compensation in China. The government action pattern (An et al., 2012), market model, and non-governmental organization (NGO) model, have been used in some locations, and will be used in Chinese provincial eco-compensation in the future (TFEMP, CCICED, 2007; Gong, 2011; Liu G et al., 2013). For example, in upstream areas of the Zhanghe River, Shanxi, Hebei, and Henan had conducted trans-provincial water rights transfer compensation. Another example is located in the Dongjiang riverhead area, where Jiangxi and Guangdong have also conducted water rights transfer compensation. Beijing and Hebei have also conducted trans-provincial eco-compensation projects (Gong, 2011; Liu G et al., 2013; Huang, 2012).
In recent years, China has made huge achievements in provincial eco-compensation, both in theory and in practice (Task Force on Eco-compensation Mechanisms and Policies, CCICED, 2007; Gong, 2011; Liu G et al., 2013). However, at the same time, differences in provincial eco-compensation frameworks have become apparent (Gong, 2011; Liu G et al., 2013; Kong, 2010; Li et al., 2010; Ding et al., 2010). Differences in eco-compensation frameworks are apparent not only at the national level, but also at the provincial or inter-regional levels, and these differences have become important issues for researchers and the public. When we study the issue of differences in Chinese provincial eco-compensation framework, we must first establish how to measure such differences and their changes. There have been few systematic studies that have measured provincial differences in eco-compensation, with most undertaking theoretical research of the theoretical framework, and compensation standards, mechanisms and types, using case studies. Studies of provincial differences in eco-compensation at the macro-scale are limited.
In this study, we investigated the theoretical framework and used various measurement methods to determine provincial differences in eco-compensation in China. We also analyzed the spatial differences in provincial eco-compensation, and considered differences in provincial eco-compensation over long time periods, including the differences in the detail and driving mechanisms of provincial eco-compensation. The conclusions can be used to improve theoretical studies of eco-compensation. At the same time, from a practical perspective, because of regional differences in China, one type of compensation may be unreasonable for application in other regions or by different bodies. The conclusions can be used to enable government to formulate a regionally related eco-compensation policy, enabling different zones to understand their own status in the national eco-compensation framework, and for establishing a national control on eco-compensation schemes.

2 Principles and methods

2.1 Theoretical framework

In China and overseas, studies have been undertaken to measure the quantity of eco-compensation. In this study, from the geographical perspective of scale relevance and scale transition, and with reference to existing methods of measuring regional differences, we propose a theoretical framework and measurement method to investigate provincial differences in eco-compensation.
2.1.1 Mechanism used to analyze provincial eco-compensation
In consideration of existing eco-compensation research (Pagiola et al., 2005, 2007), and from a geographical perspective of scale relevance and scale transition, we described the logical framework of provincial eco-compensation in China (Figure 1a). When a region’s “quantity of pollutants discharged (converted to the corresponding cost of pollution abatement)” is subtracted from the “eco-resources value”, and then added to the “economic input of pollution abatement”, a positive value [i.e., eco-resources value - quantity of pollutant discharged (converted to the corresponding cost of pollution abatement) + the economic input of pollution abatement) >0] means the region makes a positive contribution to the ecological construction of the whole nation (Liu et al., 2014; Zhang et al., 2015).
2.1.2 Mechanism used to analyze differences in provincial eco-compensation
In general, there are large differences in eco-compensation standards and the spatial and temporal distribution of eco-compensation between different regions. This is due to differences in the value of regional ecological resources, regional pollution control inputs, and regional pollution emissions, in combination with differences in national regulations and regional self-development (Figure 1b). Studies of these regional differences have been a key focus of geographers. Attempts have been made to determine the actual differences, how large they are, what factors cause them, and what the trends are in the development of regional differences (Liu W et al., 2013b). To measure provincial differences in eco-compensation, we used related research findings regarding regional differences as a reference (Liu W et al., 2013; Long, 1999; Kim et al., 2001; Guang, 2001; Jonathan et al., 2002; Liu, 2006; Liu W et al., 2013b). We focused on the key issues of the formation mechanisms of provincial differences in eco-compensation, regional differences at different spatial scales, changes in regional differences over a time series, and an analysis and comparison of the detailed differences (Figure 1c).

2.2 Calculation methods

2.2.1 Calculation of a provincial eco-compensation standard
The calculation of an eco-compensation standard is the basis of a provincial eco-compensation standard scheme. According to the mechanism of analysis of provincial eco-compensation presented in Figure 1, to calculate a provincial eco-compensation standard, we used the following frameworks: (1) measure an ecological value equivalent, (2) account for ecological value based on the ecological value equivalent, and (3) calculate the ecological economic surplus value (provincial eco-compensation standard) (Liu et al., 2014).
Figure 1 Logical framework of provincial eco-compensation and an analysis of its differences
(1) Measuring an ecological value equivalent
Based on the concept of normalization, we considered the ecological value of a forest ecosystem as a reference, and consulted related published research (Xie et al., 2008), to obtain an ecological value equivalent scale for different ecosystems. The ecological value equivalent of forest was set to 1, and then grassland was 0.42, farmland was 0.28, wetland was 1.95, rivers and lakes were 1.61, and desert was 0.05.
(2) Accounting for ecological value based on the ecological value equivalent
The provincial ecological value equivalent was calculated using Eq.1:
where Q is the total ecological value equivalent, S is ecosystem area, E is the ecological value equivalent of the ecosystem, F is the ecological value equivalent of forest, G is the ecological value equivalent of grassland, C is the ecological value equivalent of farmland, W is the ecological value equivalent of wetland, D is the ecological value equivalent of desert, and R is the ecological value equivalent of rivers and lakes. For example, SF represents forest ecosystem area and FE represents the ecological value equivalent of a forest ecosystem.
Provincial ecological value was calculated using Eq.2:
H=Q×U×λ (2)
where H is the economic value (yuan) of ecological resource of a region, Q is the total ecological value equivalent, U is the economic value of a unit of ecological value equivalent, and λ is a coefficient (the coefficient is a positive number, which is a scenario adjustment and amends the economic value of a unit ecological value equivalent; in this study, λ = 1). According to Xie Gaodi et al. (2008), in 2007 in China, the economic value of a unit ecological value equivalent was 449.1 yuan/ha. Based on changes in the Chinese agricultural production price index, we calculated the economic value of a unit ecological value equivalent over the subsequent years in China. We assumed that there was little difference in the average price of agricultural production among provinces, which, due to the large amount of subsidy in agricultural production and agricultural machinery in China, was considered reasonable. For each province it was possible to obtain the mean economic value of a unit ecological value equivalent, and then obtain an overall mean value. For example, in 2011, the mean economic value of the unit ecological value equivalent for each province in China was 603.3 yuan/hm2.
(3) Calculating the ecological economic surplus value (provincial eco-compensation standard)
The ecological economic surplus value was calculated using Eq. 3:
Y = H + I - ∑(TK×VK) (3)
where H is the economic value of regional ecological resources, I is the input in pollution treatment, T is the total amount of pollution discharged, V is the economic input for treating a unit of pollution discharged, and K = 1, 2, 3 is the treatment of waste water, flue gas, and solid waste, respectively
2.2.2 Different methods for analyzing provincial eco-compensation
By referring to the existing methods of measuring regional differences (Liu, 2006; Liu W et al., 2013; Zhang et al., 2011; Chen, 2009; Athar et al., 1994), we applied the three metrics of the coefficient of variation, Atkinson index, and Gini coefficient to analyze the time series, details, and driving mechanisms of provincial differences in eco-compensation in China.
(1) Analysis of a time series of provincial differences in eco-compensation
To analyze a time series of provincial differences in eco-compensation, we used the coefficient of variation to compare the differences between years. In view of the population size, we used a weighting function to calculate each year’s coefficient of variation. The computation was made using Eq. 4 (Liu, 2006):
\[CV=\sqrt{\sum^n_{i=1}(y_i-EC_u)^2/q_i/EC_u}\ \ (4)\]
where yi (i = 1, 2, 3, …, n) is the per capita eco-compensation standard, ECu is the average per capita eco-compensation standard throughout the country, n is the number of regions, and qi is the proportional population of area i to the country as a whole.
(2) Analysis of the details of provincial differences in eco-compensation
The Atkinson index can identify the external visibility of regional differences in eco- compensation by establishing different parameters. If the regional differences within an area are small, and these changes cannot be observed by other methods, but we need to analyze them, we can use the Atkinson index method (Liu, 2006). To analyze and compare the details of provincial differences in eco-compensation, we used the Atkinson index method as given in Eq. 5 (Liu, 2006; Yuen, 1991):
I = 1 - [∑i(yi/ECu)1-εqi]1/(1-ε) (5)
where yi (i = 1, 2, 3,..., n) is the per capita eco-compensation standard, ECu is the average per capita eco-compensation standard throughout the country, qi is the proportional population of area i to the country as a whole, and ε is a parameter related to imbalances in the external visibility of regional eco-compensation. If ε = 2, the imbalance in external visibility is moderate (Liu, 2006; Yuen, 1991). In this study, ε = 2.
(3) Analysis of the driving mechanism of provincial differences in eco-compensation
For the driving mechanism of provincial differences in eco-compensation we determined the factors influencing the extent of the differences. The Gini coefficient can be used to measure this. It was calculated using Eq. 6:
\[G=[\sum^n_{i=1}\sum^n_{j=1}|y_j-y_i|q_jq_j]/2EC_u\ \ (6)\]
where yi (or yj) (i, j = 1, 2, 3, ... , n) is the per capita eco-compensation standard in area i (or area j), ECu is the average value of the total compensation standard, n is the number of regions, and qi (or qj) is the proportional population of area i (or area j) to the country as a whole.
The biggest advantage of using the Gini coefficient is that it can resolve the total difference into factorial differences, and then analyze the influence of the different factors on the total difference:
G= (ECu1/ECu)G*1 + ... + (ECuk/ECu) G*k(7)
where ECu is the average value of the total compensation standard, ECuk is the average value of factor k, and G*k is the virtual Gini coefficient of factor k.
The virtual Gini coefficient is not the general Gini coefficient, but is calculated from Eq. 8. The virtual Gini coefficient can be a positive or negative number (Chen, 2009):
G*k = [cov(yk, F(y))] / [cov(yk, F(yk))] × [2cov(yk, F(yk)) / ECu] (8)
To calculate the virtual Gini coefficient (Jonathan et al., 2002), we first ranked each province’s eco-compensation standard and the data for each factor, y1y2≤ ... ≤yn. In Eq. 8, cov(yk, F(y)) is the index of correlation of factor k with the total eco-compensation’s rank data, cov(yk, F(yk)) is the index of correlation of factor k with factor k’s rank data, and ECu is the average value of the total compensation standard.
Sk, the contribution of factor k to the total difference, was calculated using Eq. 9:
Sk = (ECuk / ECu) × (G*k / G) (9)
The contribution of factor k to the total difference in eco-compensation not only depends on the value of factor k, but also depends on the value of the factor k Gini coefficient as a proportion of the total Gini coefficient (Liu, 2006).

3 An empirical study of the provincial differences in eco-compensation in China

3.1 Data sources

For each province, we obtained the area of forest, grassland, farmland, wetland, rivers and lakes, and deserts, and related socio-economic data information. The main data sources we consulted were the China Statistical Yearbook (2005-2015) and China Environment Statistical Yearbook (2005-2015).

3.2 Calculation of the provincial eco-compensation standard

From 2004 to 2014, the overall condition of China’s provincial eco-compensation standard did not change (Figure 2). The eco-compensation standards of developed provinces, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangdong, Tianjin, and Jiangsu, were negative, which means the development of these provinces had consumed the eco-resources of other regions. Therefore, the developed provinces should pay eco-compensation. The eco-compensation standards of developing provinces, such as Tibet, Qinghai, Xinjiang, Ningxia, Gansu, Yunnan, Guangxi, Inner Mongolia, and Heilongjiang, were positive, which means they should receive eco-compensation. In general, Inner Mongolia, Tibet, and Xinjiang were always the type of provinces that should receive eco-compensation, while Shanghai, Beijing, and other developed provinces were always the type of provinces that should pay eco-compensation.
Figure 2 The value of the eco-compensation standard of each province in China from 2004 to 2014
Note: This study did not calculate the eco-compensation standard of Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan
To verify the authenticity of the calculated provincial eco-compensation standard we calculated the eco-compensation standard as a proportion of GDP to obtain a per capita eco-compensation standard (Tables 1 and 2).
The results indicated that the eco-compensation standard as a proportion of GDP and the per capita eco-compensation standard were realistic values. Tibet had the largest eco-compensation standard as a proportion of GDP, followed by Qinghai, Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, Gansu, Yunnan, Heilongjiang, Guangxi, Guizhou, and Ningxia. The eco-compensation standard as a proportion of GDP was the smallest for Guangdong, followed by Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Shandong, Tianjin, Chongqing, Henan, Anhui, Beijing and Liaoning. From the perspective of a per capita eco-compensation standard, of the provinces that should receive compensation, Tibet had the largest eco-compensation standard and Shandong had the smallest. Of the provinces that should pay eco-compensation, Shanghai had the largest standard, followed by Beijing, Tianjin, Jiangsu, and Guangdong. These results are comparable with those of other studies (Song et al., 2010; Jin, 2009).
Table 1 The eco-compensation standard as a proportion (%) of GDP for each province in China from 2004 to 2014
Province 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Beijing 0.39 0.24 0.23 0.23 0.23 0.27 0.25 0.25 0.31 0.19 0.22
Tianjin 0.31 0.06 0.12 0.10 0.08 0.02 0.09 0.08 0.07 0.20 0.02
Hebei 0.57 0.64 0.51 0.48 0.46 0.41 0.33 0.36 0.32 0.39 0.50
Shanxi 0.99 0.96 1.17 1.12 1.11 0.94 0.61 0.54 0.55 0.65 0.45
Inner Mongolia 11.49 9.64 8.03 6.62 6.04 5.28 4.46 4.15 3.88 4.00 3.80
Liaoning 0.78 0.86 0.92 0.54 0.49 0.45 0.35 0.30 0.26 0.33 0.35
Jilin 2.02 1.90 1.61 1.48 1.47 1.27 1.06 0.97 0.91 0.83 0.81
Heilongjiang 2.91 2.74 2.49 2.44 2.52 2.49 2.04 1.87 1.72 1.87 1.82
Shanghai 1.34 1.02 1.04 0.83 0.81 0.71 0.71 0.57 0.37 0.21 0.17
Jiangsu 0.21 0.10 0.13 0.00 0.04 0.05 0.09 0.06 0.10 0.03 0.00
Zhejiang 0.09 0.15 0.14 0.11 0.09 0.12 0.05 0.07 0.05 0.11 0.12
Anhui 0.60 0.56 0.50 0.53 0.53 0.47 0.34 0.30 0.28 0.43 0.26
Fujian 0.94 1.10 0.76 0.59 0.61 0.51 0.45 0.39 0.40 0.48 0.43
Jiangxi 1.79 1.72 1.44 1.31 1.27 1.15 0.96 0.84 0.81 0.79 0.70
Shandong 0.17 0.26 0.20 0.19 0.21 0.11 0.05 0.08 0.12 0.14 0.22
Henan 0.30 0.33 0.30 0.32 0.25 0.20 0.14 0.17 0.10 0.18 0.20
Hubei 0.72 0.77 0.67 0.63 0.59 0.64 0.52 0.36 0.43 0.47 0.41
Hunan 1.01 1.07 0.99 0.82 0.83 0.75 0.62 0.54 0.60 0.56 0.49
Guangdong 0.04 0.02 0.04 0.00 0.02 0.00 0.01 0.04 0.02 0.02 0.02
Guangxi 2.03 1.99 1.68 1.61 1.53 1.53 1.24 1.16 1.07 1.13 0.95
Hainan 0.05 0.14 0.31 0.19 0.30 0.34 0.28 0.40 0.51 0.30 0.38
Chongqing 0.13 0.06 0.07 0.15 0.14 0.19 0.20 0.15 0.15 0.20 0.13
Sichuan 1.78 1.64 1.45 1.29 1.31 1.18 0.98 0.93 0.95 0.96 0.86
Guizhou 1.87 1.84 1.76 1.34 1.49 1.47 1.20 1.16 1.20 1.24 1.03
Yunnan 3.83 3.77 3.37 3.01 3.06 2.96 2.61 2.33 2.18 2.11 1.84
Tibet 147.62 140.27 122.96 112.86 117.39 103.26 92.37 86.18 78.54 75.70 65.81
Shaanxi 1.74 1.67 1.25 1.06 1.02 1.08 1.01 0.80 0.76 0.80 0.67
Gansu 4.77 4.56 4.23 3.87 3.79 3.75 3.21 2.81 2.74 2.46 2.13
Qinghai 33.65 31.28 26.66 23.34 22.01 20.45 16.68 15.10 14.02 16.20 14.89
Ningxia 3.09 2.09 2.17 1.83 2.03 1.47 1.18 1.05 1.08 1.32 1.46
Xinjiang 9.02 8.36 7.35 6.90 7.02 7.05 5.54 5.13 4.62 4.60 4.19
Table 2 The per capita eco-compensation standard for each province in China from 2004 to 2014 (yuan)
Province 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Beijing -158.20 -110.27 -117.86 -133.00 -142.24 -179.19 -182.87 -199.46 -265.78 -179.53 -213.76
Tianjin -93.07 -19.94 -50.70 -45.56 -47.79 -10.42 -61.20 -65.39 -60.74 -191.86 20.69
Hebei 71.39 94.67 85.45 93.49 105.75 100.10 94.80 121.93 116.62 152.27 200.63
Shanxi 106.27 120.75 168.53 199.68 238.70 200.79 157.44 168.19 185.00 227.01 157.11
1459.67 1566.38 1643.48 1750.93 2100.86 2090.76 2108.05 2402.22 2472.26 2695.39 2692.56
Liaoning 123.78 163.52 199.84 139.16 155.85 157.29 146.58 152.45 148.16 202.41 225.64
Jilin 232.41 253.17 252.59 286.41 344.77 336.46 335.78 374.57 393.13 391.56 405.06
Heilongjiang 361.75 396.07 405.47 453.92 546.90 557.97 552.70 614.50 614.48 702.84 712.29
Shanghai -543.32 -500.63 -560.69 -502.81 -529.61 -484.25 -526.53 -462.42 -313.08 -191.09 -167.17
Jiangsu -42.71 -24.88 -37.66 -1.49 -17.29 -22.93 -46.16 -36.32 -70.40 19.48 1.13
Zhejiang 20.89 39.05 44.85 39.50 37.26 52.58 26.47 39.78 32.44 77.65 85.50
Anhui 46.53 49.28 50.47 63.26 76.97 77.30 71.51 77.75 80.62 136.45 87.95
Fujian 161.07 202.61 160.64 151.25 182.14 171.63 180.07 183.98 209.71 274.42 269.20
Jiangxi 146.20 161.96 160.08 173.37 201.59 198.78 204.03 219.92 232.88 251.61 242.95
Shandong 29.35 53.04 47.70 51.02 70.05 38.93 19.24 38.55 64.30 76.00 135.63
Henan 26.04 37.00 40.24 50.64 47.10 40.52 34.56 47.46 31.74 53.51 64.48
Hubei 71.15 88.53 90.04 102.86 116.56 145.28 144.45 122.46 164.38 199.16 194.08
Hunan 85.37 111.08 119.77 121.13 149.50 153.22 150.96 160.51 199.77 205.66 196.89
Guangdong -8.10 -4.51 -12.14 -0.37 5.61 -0.41 -2.80 -20.63 -13.25 -12.49 12.45
Guangxi 142.65 173.71 171.60 197.02 222.36 244.38 257.07 292.03 299.19 306.83 312.17
Hainan 4.40 15.70 39.00 28.52 52.81 64.70 65.36 115.85 165.13 106.52 147.27
Chongqing -13.00 -6.86 -9.79 25.64 28.39 44.28 54.97 52.00 58.74 84.54 56.47
Sichuan 140.62 147.86 154.25 168.01 203.59 204.13 209.72 243.49 279.53 310.87 302.16
Guizhou 80.48 98.87 111.25 106.17 147.61 162.68 159.36 190.98 235.80 283.05 272.47
Yunnan 267.59 293.87 300.98 318.54 382.85 400.13 409.28 447.31 482.06 527.07 500.30
Tibet 11784.78 12584.29 12555.44 13333.22 15873.63 15396.28 15624.33 17231.68 17877.36 19594.46 19055.43
Shaanxi 136.10 166.42 152.85 165.26 199.70 236.71 272.64 267.81 292.16 340.13 313.91
Gansu 316.77 346.88 378.29 409.97 470.56 497.10 516.09 549.26 600.26 597.50 560.77
Qinghai 2910.02 3129.65 3154.38 3371.92 4047.11 3968.94 4000.71 4441.20 4633.86 5890.33 5877.77
Ningxia 281.97 214.93 261.26 275.41 394.66 317.60 315.17 346.48 389.62 515.76 608.41
Xinjiang 1033.77 1097.51 1092.24 1159.62 1377.57 1397.13 1377.89 1535.90 1553.15 1699.85 1689.18

3.3 Analysis of provincial differences in eco-compensation in China

3.3.1 Spatial differences
Seen from a geographic perspective (Figure 3), there is certain zonality in China’s provincial eco-compensation. The “Hu Huanyong Line[The “Hu Huanyong Line” is indicated in Figure 3.]” can be taken as a boundary. Most of the provinces that are pierced by the “Hu Huanyong Line” or are located to its northwest side should receive eco-compensation (except Gansu and Ningxia[The eco-compensation standards of Gansu are increasing annually and are similar to those of Qinghai and Sichuan. The eco-compensation standard is small in Ningxia owing to its small area.]). The area southeast of the “Hu Huanyong Line” comprises about 43% of the country, and contains more than 90% of China’s population and GDP. The southeast area functions as a high-density socio-economy. To the northwest of the “Hu Huanyong Line”, there is a vast but sparsely populated territory, which functions as a developing economy and has a small population. The main priorities in this area are ecological restoration and protection.
Figure 3 Spatial distribution of the provincial eco-compensation standard in China from 2004 to 2014
Figure 4 The coefficient of variation of provincial eco-compensation in China from 2004 to 2014
3.3.2 Time series of provincial differences in eco-compensation
The coefficient of variation is a suitable parameter for analyzing variations in a time series (Liu W et al., 2013b; Liu, 2006). By calculating the coefficient of variation for China’s provincial eco-compensation from 2004 to 2014 (Figure 4), we found that in recent years the provincial differences in eco-compensation have tended to increase, with an annual average increase of 1.4%. However, there were fluctuations in 2006, 2009, and 2014 when the differences were not as large. The largest annual average value of the coefficient of variation was 7.5% in 2008, and the next largest values were 4.5% in 2011, 3.4% in 2013, and 2.1% in 2005 and 2007. In 2009 and 2014 the value was -3%, which was the largest reduction in the coefficient of variation, with the next largest being -1.5% in 2006.
3.3.3 Details of the provincial differences in eco-compensation
The Atkinson index is a suitable metric for analyzing the details (i.e., rate of increase or decrease) of the provincial differences in eco-compensation. It can be seen from Figure 5 that in recent years, the provincial differences in eco-compensation in China have increased, with an annual average rate of increase of 23.9%. In 2005, 2006, 2013, and 2014, the rate of increase was larger, at 284.8%, 105.3%, 254.4%, and 71.5%, respectively. In 2009 and 2010, the rate of increase was 7.7% and 5.7%, respectively. However, in 2007, 2008, 2011, and 2012 the rate of increase became negative at -56.2%, -7.1%, -48%, and -70.7%, respectively.
Figure 5 Atkinson index values of provincial differences in eco-compensation in China from 2004 to 2014
3.3.4 The driving mechanism of provincial differences in eco-compensation
In 2004-2014, the Gini coefficient of provincial differences in eco-compensation showed a tendency of increasing fluctuation (Figure 6). In most years, especially from 2004 to 2012, there was a tendency for fluctuations to increase, but in recent years this tendency has declined.
By calculating the virtual Gini index, we can decompose the total provincial differences in eco-compensation into various factors that influence the difference. The contribution of the factors determined from the virtual Gini index of China’s provincial eco-compensation in 2014 are shown in Table 3.
Table 3 Factors affecting the provincial differences in eco-compensation in China in 2014
Factor of influence G* (virtual) G (total) S (factor contribution)
Eco-resources value 0.018 0.029 0.733
Economic input of pollution abatement 0.017 0.077
Cost of pollution abatement 0.018 0.190
It can be seen from Table 3 that the value of eco-resources played the decisive role in provincial differences in eco-compensation in China, with a proportional contribution of 73.3%. The next most important factor was the cost of pollution abatement, with a contribution of 19%. The economic input of pollution abatement had a minor role, with a contribution of less than 8%. Enhancing the value of provincial eco-resources and reducing pollution emissions are the main considerations when regulating provincial eco-compensation.
Figure 6 The Gini coefficient of provincial differences in eco-compensation in China from 2004 to 2014

4 Conclusions and discussion

4.1 Research conclusions

(1) Inspired by the work of Pagiola and others with regard to eco-compensation, we described the logical framework of provincial eco-compensation in China, expounded the theoretical framework of measuring provincial differences in eco-compensation, and investigated the variation in a time series of these differences, the details of the differences, and the driving mechanism of provincial differences in eco-compensation in China.
(2) Using statistical data for the provinces of China from 2004 to 2014, we calculated a provincial eco-compensation standard, determined the eco-compensation standard as a proportion of GDP, and calculated a per capita eco-compensation standard. The results confirmed that the eco-compensation standard as a proportion of GDP and the per capita eco-compensation standard produced realistic values. Seen from a geographic perspective, most of the provinces that are pierced by the “Hu Huanyong Line” or are located to the northwest of the line should receive eco-compensation.
(3) We calculated the coefficient of variation, Atkinson index, and Gini coefficient of China’s provincial eco-compensation. From 2004 to 2014, provincial differences in eco-compensation in China had a tendency to increase, but there were fluctuations in this trend in some years. The range of the Atkinson index was larger than that of the other two indices. The Atkinson index is suitable for analyzing the detailed differences in provincial eco-compensation.
(4) Among the curves produced to represent the whole time series there were differences in the peaks and troughs produced by the different methods. In the short-term, the analysis results indicated a lack of conformity in the degree of difference produced by each index. Over the long-term, the tendency for variation was similar among the three indices. When considering provincial differences in eco-compensation, we should obtain the long-term tendency for variation as a reference. The results obtained in this study were comparable with those obtained from other studies.
(5) By calculating the virtual Gini index it was found that the value of eco-resources played a decisive role in provincial differences in eco-compensation in China, accounting for 73.3% of the overall differences. The next most important factor was the cost of pollution abatement, which accounted for 19% of the differences. The economic input on pollution abatement had a minor role, accounting for just 7.7% of the differences. By enhancing the protection and establishment of forest, grassland, farmland, wetland, and river and lake eco-resources, and reducing waste water, atmospheric emissions, waste residues and other forms of pollution, provincial eco-compensation will be effectively regulated.

4.2 Limitations of this study

Due to data limitations this study just applied the methods of the coefficient of variation, Atkinson index, and Gini coefficient, and investigated the variation in a time series of these differences, the details of the differences, and the driving mechanism of provincial differences in eco-compensation in China. In practice, there are other methods that could have been applied, such as the Selma index and index system methods. Whether these methods are suitable to measure provincial differences in eco-compensation requires further investigation.

The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

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Dai Qiwen, 2010. Study on the spatial selection of ecological compensation objects: A case study of water conservation of grasslands in Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture.Journal of Natural Resources, 25(3): 415-425. (in Chinese)The research of the spatial selection of ecological compensation objects is the basic and supporting research,which plays an important role in establishing an effective and rational ecological compensation mechanism.However,there is rarely special research on spatial selection of ecological compensation objects at the moment in domestic.Lack of spatial differentiation in the targeting mechanism may lead to efficiency losses.Addressing this challenge,we construct an applied site selection tool,which takes into account three variables that vary in space: environmental services provided,risks of losing those services,and participation costs.Taking water conservation of grasslands in Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture as an example,and towns as basic unit,the whole prefecture was classified into five levels of compensation zones by cluster analysis based on the model: the priority compensation zones,sub-priority compensation zones,secondary compensation zones,critical compensation zones and potential compensation zones and the relevant characteristics of the five levels of compensation zones were analyzed.Taking the present basis and the financial circumstances of the budget into account,the compensation budget has been greatly limited.The space selection model,which is based on the efficiency of the compensation funds has great practical significance.The study only takes the water conservation service of grassland ecosystem as an example,with the research method having strong applicability,not only for domains and middle level,but also for the macro level and the national level;it is not only confined to grassland ecosystem,but also applies to other ecosystems and the whole ecosystem;it is not only limited to water conservation service,but also applies to other all ecosystem services,through comprehensive analysis of research findings.The result are drawn as follows: 1)From the view point of spatial distribution,the main priority zones of compensation of grassland ecosystems are mainly distributed in purely pastoral areas,while the non-priority zones are mainly distributed in the farming-pastoral areas,agricultural areas and forest areas.2)The order of compensation efficiency of grassland ecosystems is consistent with the degraded risk of grassland ecosystems,the priority zones of compensation of grassland ecosystems is also vulnerable ecological region and high degraded risk areas.3)The order of compensation efficiency of grassland ecosystems is consistent with the ecological significance,the priority zones of compensation is important ecological function area.4)The low efficiency and the inefficiency compensation zones which occupy nearly 17% of the grassland ecosystem are neither vulnerable ecological regions nor ecological function areas.Based on ecological frangibility,ecological significance and compensation efficiency,this part of grassland can not be temporarily compensated and protected.


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Kosoy N, Corbera E, 2010. Payments for ecosystem services as commodity fetishism.Ecological Economics, 69(6): 1228-1236.Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) economically reward resource managers for the provision of ecosystem services and are thus characterised by (i) an ecological function subject to trade; (ii) the establishment of a standard unit of exchange; (iii) and supply, demand and intermediation flows between those who sell and buy ecosystem services. This paper departs from the term commodity fetishism, broadly understood as the masking of the social relationships underlying the process of production, to illuminate three invisibilities in the commodification of ecosystem services. Firstly, we argue that narrowing down the complexity of ecosystems to a single service has serious technical difficulties and ethical implications on the way we relate to and perceive nature. Secondly, the commodification of ecosystem services denies the multiplicity of values which can be attributed to these services, since it requires that a single exchange-value is adopted for trading. Finally, we suggest that the process of production, exchange and consumption of ecosystem services is characterised by power asymmetries which may contribute to reproducing rather than addressing existing inequalities in the access to natural resources and services.


Li Hao, Huang Wei, Liu Tao,et al.., 2011. Ecological compensation mechanism on inter-basin water transfer.Journal of Natural Resources, 26(9): 1506-1512. (in Chinese)The inter-basin water transfer is one of the most important methods of solving water problem in water shortage regions of our country.Nevertheless,the ecological compensation,which derived from the inter-basin water transfer,is the key factor that could restrict the economic and social benefit of the water transfer project.Nowadays,when we design the mechanism of ecological compensation in inter-basin water transfer,the main adoption of general theories and methods applied in the field of inner basin leads to series problems,such as: the absence of compensation subject,incompleteness of compensation objects,irrational compensation standards,and simplicity of compensation methods.These problems greatly limit the practice of ecological compensation in inter-basin water transfer.In this paper,we have compared the different features of ecological compensation between inner-basin water conservation and inter-basin water transfer in the aspects of impacts of projects,the forms of water rights transfer,relationship of stakeholders,management departments and evaluation standards.Then,from the perspective of regional water rights,we put forward a mechanism framework of ecological compensation in inter-basin water transfer,which includes objects,standards,method and guarantee system of ecological compensation.


Li Ning, Ding Sibao, 2009. Institutional construction of establishing and improving inter-regional eco-compensation mechanism in China.China Population Resources and Environment, 19(1): 146-149. (in Chinese)As the equilibrium result of games between social interests of varied groups,ecological compensation mechanism will adjust the present situation that economy and environment are not coordinative;therefore,it will become an important realization mechanism of constructing the harmonious society.China is one of countries that carry out ecological compensation more early in the world.These years,the central government and some provinces/districts of China continuously and actively explored and practiced ecological compensation mechanism,obtained many valuable experiences,and put forward a great deal affective management means and tools.All of the above reflected features and demands of ecological compensation theories.But as a new type of environmental regulatory system,there are a lot of difficulties and restricting factors that we will deal with when carrying out ecological compensation.In order to establish a complete ecological compensation mechanism,we should start from perspectives of system,main part,measures,standards,means and management,etc.The paper tries to highlight the system issues in studying the construction of ecological compensation mechanism,and tries to discuss how to improve the construction of inter-regional ecological compensation mechanism in China from perspectives legal system,management system for river basins and interagency transfer payment system.


Li Pingxing, Sun Wei, 2010. Theoretical reflection on ecological compensation from the perspective of economic geography.Ecology and Environmental Sciences, 19(6): 1507-1512. (in Chinese)Traditional ecological compensation aims at protecting and ameliorating ecological environments, and optimizing the use of natural resources, which can not reveal the full value of it in view of its effect for ecological protection, environmental construction and regional development. The situation of regional development needs for the ecological compensation which is regarded as an important approach to realize the regional sustainable development and the coordination among regions. Regional sustainable devel-opments and the coordination among regions are one of the major research objects of Economic Geography. How to treat the regional ecological compensation from the perspective of Economic Geography is a key issue in order to realize the coordination among en-vironmental protection and amelioration, economic growth and social progress. Economic Geography provides new insights into its theoretical foundation. Based on rethinking of classical theories of Economic Geography, such as Location Theory, Theory of Indus-trial Structure Evolution and Theory of Human-Nature Relationship and Territorial System, we analyzed insufficiency of traditional ecological compensation mechanism. In view of the Major Function Oriented Zoning (MFOZ hereafter) that aims to build the sus-tainable and orderly regional development pattern of China, the target orientation and implement mechanism of regional ecological compensation were proposed based on the new theoretical foundation from Economic Geography. The target orientation that coordi-nates development and equalizes basic public services among regions is proposed. Hereafter, the government dominating and market participating implement model of ecological compensation under the framework of MFOZ was designed. Finally, the difficulties of carrying out regional ecological compensation were summarized and related suggestions were put forward.


Li Qing, Zhang Luocheng, Wu Qinghua, 2011. Questionnaire survey on willingness to pay about ecological compensation of Lake Tianmu catchment, Taihu Basin.Journal of Lake Sciences, 23(1): 143-149. (in Chinese)It is important for improving water quality of Lake Taihu that ecological compensation mechanism and incentive mechanism for upstream ecological protection is carried out in Lake Tianmu catchment.Firstly,we acquainted of residents' cognitive status of environmental protection and ecological compensation in Lake Tianmu catchment,and found a strong environmental protection awareness and a great ecological compensation demand.Then,we investigated the willingness to pay for ecological compensation of both local residents and visitors.Finally,we improved the original formula of the greatest willingness to pay.We summed up a total ecological compensation amount of 12924.08 thousand yuan in Lake Tianmu catchment by integrating the greatest back-feeding willingness of tourist tickets to pay into water fee regurgitation-feeding.It was not enough for ecological compensation merely at the material or monetary compensation,and more important way of Lake Tianmu catchment ecological compensation was that some policy inclination of this important eco-function areas from both state and provincial level.

Li Wenhua, Li Shidong, Li Fen,et al.., 2007. Discussions on several issues of forest eco-compensation mechanism.China Population Resources and Environment, 17(2): 13-18. (in Chinese)China is a country with a vast territory and a large population but limited forest resources,which are mainly distributed in the economically less developed regions.Forest eco-compensation mechanisms hence have become a hot topic in the society.The article put forward the general framework of eco-compensation.The institutional framework of eco-compensation should be established among the multi-departments with different temporal and spatial scales.Based on reviewing the history of forest ecocompensation initiatives,the article makes clear the definition and scales and deeply discusses several key issues of forest eco-compensation.The main contents covered in this article are: 1) Classification of forest eco-compensation.Ecological protective forest is classified for protection forest and special use forest.Protection forest includes four types named water conservation forest,soil protection forest,sand control forest and riparian protection forest.And special-use forest includes ago-forest and nature reserve forest.2) Compensation standards of forest.On the basis of specialized forest eco-compensation,the standards of compensation need to be considered the following factors: direct expense of plantation,opportunity cost for forests protection and benefits of forest ecosystem services.3) Enlarging multiply financing channels for forest eco-compensation especially for market-based approaches.It is important to diversified the compensation channel via strengthening the initiatives of private enterprises,seeking the technique support of relative experts and establishing special fund donated by international NGOs.4) Establishing "ecological taxation".The government need levy "Ecological Tax" to generate adequate and sustainable revenue for implementing the forest eco-compensation as the forest ecological services belonging to public goods.5) "Three-stage" strategy of forest eco-compensation.It includes three steps namely: improvement stage of current system,transitional stage and abolishing stage.


Liu Chunla, Liu Weidong, Lu Dadao, 2015. China’s provincial eco-compensation difference in 2004-2011.Acta Geographica Sinica, 70(12): 1897-1910. (in Chinese)In this paper, we discussed a theoretical framework based on analysis of provincial eco- compensation difference and presented the measurement methods. Via the use of coefficient of variation, Atkinson index, and Gini coefficient, we probed the overall differences of Chinese provincial eco- compensation time series data from 2004 to 2011 and studied the driving mechanism underlying such differences. Results show that:(1) The provincial ecocompensation standard has geographical features. For example, the provinces crossed by the "HU Huanyong Line" or located to its northwestern side have obtained extensive ecocompensation.(2) The eco- compensation difference presents an increasing trend, but with some fluctuations in 2006 and 2009 by coefficient of variation, in 2005, 2007 and 2011 by Gini coefficient, in 2007, 2008 and 2011 by Atkinson index.(3) Time series curves indicate that while the three signals(coefficient of variation, Atkinson index, and Gini coefficient) differ in the short- term analysis, they show the same tendency in the longer term. The results indicate that it is necessary to evaluate the eco- compensation difference at provincial level for a long period of time.(4) Via the calculation of the virtual Gini coefficient, we found that, among the factors that influence provincial eco- compensation difference, the economic value of ecoresources plays a decisive role, explaining more than 73% of the difference. The cost of environmental pollutant governance is the second most important factor, contributing to more than 19% of the difference. The input to environmental pollution amelioration has the least influence, contributing to less than 8% of the difference. The research results agree with facts and other researches, and could give references to policy makers.

Liu Chunla, Liu Weidong, Lu Dadao,et al.., 2016. Eco-compensation and harmonious regional development in China.Chinese Geographical Science, 26(3): 283-294.

Liu Chunla, Liu Weidong, Xu Mei, 2014. The provincial eco-compensation standard of China based on ecological value equivalents.Resources Science, 36(1): 148-155. (in Chinese)Inspired by Pagiola and others' thinking about eco-compensation, based on a geographical view of scale relevance and scale transition we described the logical framework of provincial eco-compensation in China. Combined with different accounting for ecological value, this study presented the model of provincial eco-compensation standard in China based on ecological value equivalents. We used statistical data for 2011 as a case study and calculated the provincial ecological economic value and eco-compensation standard, and compared each province 's GDP. We found that the provincial ecological economic value, provincial eco-compensation standard, and the ratio that accounted for provincial GDP, all correspond to reality. To the provincial eco-compensation standard, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangdong, Tianjing, Jiangsu and other economically-developed provinces' eco-compensation standards are negative, which means their economic development has occupied other areas' eco-resources and they should pay eco-compensation. Tibet, Qinghai, Sinkiang, Ningxia, Gansu, Yunnan, Guangxi, Inner Mongolia, Heilongjiang and other less-developed provinces' eco-compensation standards are positive and they should receive eco-compensation. The percentage of eco-compensation standard to GDP of Tibet is 86.16%, which is the maximum of all provinces in China; the minimum was in Guangdong at 0.04%. The people in Tibet should receive 17214.6 CNY per person every year(the maximum) and the people in Shandong should receive 38.6 CNY per person every year(minimum). Meanwhile, people in Beijing should pay 462.3 CNY per person every year(maximum), Tianjing residents should pay 65.4 CNY per person every year, Jiangsu 36.3 CNY per person every year and Guangdong 20.6 CNY per person every year.

Liu Guihuan, Lu Jun, Wang Xiahui, 2013. Overview of Ecological Compensation Policy in China. Beijing: China Environmental Science Press, 5-84. (in Chinese)

Liu Hui, 2006. Regional inequality measurement: Methods and evaluations.Geographical Research, 25(4): 710-718. (in Chinese)Regional inequality is one of the major subjects of research on China,and is a major concern to the Chinese government.On the basis of analyzing the structure differences of some major indexes for measuring regional inequality,the rural regional inequality changes in China at provincial level from 1980 to 2002 is described by different methods respectively.It is found that the changes of different indexes show the same trend in a longer period of time,but some in a shorter period.All the methods showed that China's rural regional inequality has an overall increasing trend with a short period of decreasing in the whole process of reform.However,the decomposition of the Theil's regional inequality reveals that since 1987,the interregional inequalities among the eastern,central and western regions have been more serious than the provincial inequality within regions.The further factor decomposition of the Gini index shows that farmers' wage component contributes more than 66% to the total inequality index and is the most important factor resulting in rural total regional inequality.It is proposed that any conclusions from a short period of data analysis are inadeguate.When analyzing driving forces of regional inequality,long-term data should be used.The further decomposing analysis of different indexes shows that each method has its own advantages and disadvantages.The Gini index is suitable for factor analysis but cannot be decomposed by regions.The greatest advantage of the Theil's index is that it can be decomposed by different levels of regions and is very useful for different spatial scale analyses of regional inequality.Standard Deviation is more suitable for simple analysis of regional inequality in China.Compared with the above three indexes,the Atkinson index is rarely used.But when regional inequality is very small,it is the only one that can be used for analysis.


Liu Weidonget al., 2013a. Report on Regional Development of China in 2011. Beijing: The Commercial Press, 4-95. (in Chinese)

Liu Weidonget al., 2013b. Economic Geography Thought. Beijing: Science Press, 10-124. (in Chinese)

Long Genying, 1999. China’s changing regional disparities during the reform period.Economic Geography, 75(1): 59-70.I examine regional disparities in China during the reform period (197809000994) based on the latest measures of provincial per capita GDP. Results reveal a 090008U-shaped090009 pattern in regional inequality over time. Regional inequality in per capita GDP among the 30 provinces of China diminished as reforms progressed until 1990, after which it started widening. This diminishing trend was due to a significant decline in income inequality among provinces in the coastal region. A further test indicates that an increase in per capita GDP in the southern coastal provinces is the main reason for declining regional inequality in China during the early reform period (197809000990). Rising GDP in the southern coastal belt also led to widening regional disparities between coastal and interior regions after 1978. As a result, regional inequality in per capita GDP among the 30 provinces has worsened since 1990. From 1992 to 1994, regional disparities between coastal and interior provinces became more significant than the traditional North-South inequality in the Chinese space economy within the context of uneven regional development.


Ma Aihui, Cai Yinying, Zhang Anlu, 2012. An empirical study of cultivated land ecological compensation based on choice experiments method.Journal of Natural Resources, 27(7): 1154-1163. (in Chinese)In China, limited cultivated land bears great pressure with economic development, so the most severe protection policy for cultivated land in the world has been implemented by the Chinese government for many years, but the present command and control policy has subtle effects. Therefore, how to find a kind of effective measurement to protect the rare cultivated land resources in China is one of the key topics for both land resources protection and ecological environmental construction. The ecological compensation practice of many countries and regions has shown that eco-compensation mechanism is an effective means to solve the contradiction between cultivated land resources protection and economic development, and the accounting and determination of eco-compensation criteria are always the core issues, and also are the key and difficult point in ecological compensation mechanism. This paper takes the stakeholders of cultivated land ecological compensation-citizens鈥 survey as an example, and uses a new method to evaluate environmental quality, which is a choice experiment method to simulate cultivated land ecological compensation policy and its trading market, and to obtain willingness to pay and quotas of citizens about cultivated land resources protection. Then through a certain econometric model, it can measure citizens鈥 preferences about attribute of cultivated land protection, including cultivated land area, the quality of cultivated land, the surrounding landscape and ecological environment of cultivated land. This paper also measures welfare level difference value of policy scheme which is a combination of four attributes in cultivated land protection. Two results can be drawn from the study. Firstly, to protect cultivated land resources, citizens focus more on cultivated land ecological landscape surroundings than other properties, and they are willing to pay 154 yuan for improving cultivated land landscape and ecological environment surroundings every year. Secondly, in many attribute combinations, citizens are willing to pay 247 yuan per year for the best policy scheme. That is to say, citizens should pay 247 yuan per year for cultivated land eco-compensation. Different combinations of welfare level difference in value for the cultivated land can contribute to determine a flexible eco-compensation standard in construction of eco-compensation mechanism.

Pagiola S, Areenas A, Platais G, 2005. Can payments for environmental services help reduce poverty? An exploration of the issues and the evidence to date from Latin America.World Development, 33(2): 237-253.This paper examines the main ways in which Payments for Environmental Services (PES) might affect poverty. PES may reduce poverty mainly by making payments to poor natural resource managers in upper watersheds. The extent of the impact depends on how many PES participants are in fact poor, on the poor鈥檚 ability to participate, and on the amounts paid. Although PES programs are not designed for poverty reduction, there can be important synergies when program design is well thought out and local conditions are favorable. Possible adverse effects can occur where property rights are insecure or if PES programs encourage less labor-intensive practices.


Pagiola S, Platais G, 2007. Payments for environmental services: From theory to practice. Washington D C: World Bank.

Qin Yanhong, Kang Muyi, 2007. A review of ecological compensation and its improvement measures.Journal of Natural Resources, 22(4): 557-567. (in Chinese)Ecological conservation or protection is a kind of socioeconomic activity with positive externality.To internalize the externality,the concept of Ecological Compensation (EC) is put forward.It adopts economic and market-based instruments to encourage people participate in ecological conservation.Participant Gets Principle (PGP) and Beneficiary Pays Principle (BPP) are the two basic principles of it.EC has been widely applied to afforestation,watershed management,agro-environmental protection,biodiversity conservation,carbon sequestration,and so on.While its theories and practices are still in infancy,the compensation system is imperfect with respect to who should be compensated,who should pay,how much to be compensated,and how to finance and allocate compensation payments.By reviewing EC approaches and some efforts that have been made in developed countries (e.g. America and some European countries) and developing countries (e.g. China and Latin American countries),we find out there was very little use of the BPP,ecology and economics have not been well integrated into EC studies,most programs just focus on payments,ignoring the influence of socioeconomic factors on ecological conservation,and so on.After the review and comments,we summarize a functioning mechanism of ecological compensation,which can guide us to improve ecological compensation system.The improvement methods concern:(a)identifying providers and beneficiaries of ecosystem services; (b)on the basis of opportunity cost approach,integrating ecological conservation with regional socioeconomic development,settling proper compensation standards to services providers;(c)calculating payment levels from the side of beneficiaries by integrating the quantity of services they receive,their willingness to pay and their bearing capacity;(d)seeking financing sources and allocating payments cost-effectively;and(e)building up the framework of EC.We consider an effective EC system should take “hematogenesis” rather than “blood transfusion” as its object,and EC research should integrate ecological theories and methods with those of economics.


Ruan Benqing, Xu Fengran, Zhang Chunling, 2008. Review of research and practice of river basin ecological compensation.Journal of Hydraulic Engineering, 39(10): 1220-1225. (in Chinese)The advancement in research of river basin ecological compensation in the aspects of basic concept,theoretical bases,compensative standard and calculation method for compensation cost is summarized.The experiences of river basin ecological compensation practices including the application of government control,market mechanism and law accumulated both in China and abroad are analyzed.On this basis the problems in this field pending for further research and practice are suggested.


Salzman J, Ruhl J B, 2000. Currencies and the commodification of environmental law.Stanford Law Review, 53(3): 607-694.The success of several environmental trading markets (ETMs) has led to proposals for broader use of ETMs in environmental and resource management policy. The successful ETMs all share a basic feature-they exchange units of trade that are fungible, such as tons of sulfur dioxide or kilos of fish. This feature of trading promotes resource allocation efficiency while advancing environmental protection. But most commodities exchanged in current and proposed ETMs, such as wetlands and endangered species habitat, exhibit nonfungibilities across the dimensions of type, time, and space. Using ETMs to trade these commodities is no longer trading "environmental apples for apples," and thus the rationale for using ETMs is called into question. In this article, the authors develop a comprehensive analytical framework for evaluating ETMs from the perspective of commodity nonfungibility and explore the challenge presented by trading environmental apples for oranges. They argue that by focusing on nonfungible commodities and their currencies we can better explain the design of ETMs, their rules of exchange, and provisions for public participation.


Song B, Zhang X X, Xin Y L,et al.., 2010. Ecological compensation accounting for provinces in China based on ecological footprint. International Conference on Engineering and Business Management (EBM 2010), 3621-3626.An accounting method was proposed to address the ecological compensation relationship among provinces in China. The ecological service supply and consumption of each province was calculated based on ecological footprint method, and then the coefficient of supply and consumption was derived. Combining with the sum of national ecological service condition, the ecological compensation amount due to each province was determined. The results show that the spatial distribution of ecological compensation amount per capita follows the sequence of eastern>northeastern>middle>western. Compensation amount of eastern provinces is mostly negative, while western provinces positive. The minimum ecological compensation amount per capita is located on Shanghai province (-391.96 Yuan), and the maximum on Xizang province (1368.03 Yuan). This spatial pattern basically corresponds to the economic and ecological condition of each province.

Strauss S Y, Agrawal A A, 1999. The ecology and evolution of plant tolerance to herbivory.Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 14(5): 179-185.The tolerance of plants to herbivory reflects the degree to which a plant can regrow and reproduce after damage from herbivores. Autoecological factors, as well as the influence of competitors and mutualists, affect the level of plant tolerance. Recent work indicates that there is a heritable basis for tolerance and that it can evolve in natural plant populations. Although tolerance is probably not a strict alternative to plant resistance, there could be inter- and intraspecific tradeoffs between these defensive strategies.


Sustainable Development Strategy Research Group in the Administrative Center for China’s Agenda 21 (SDSRG, ACCA), 2007. Ecological compensation: International Experiences and Chinese Practice . Beijing: Social Sciences Academic Press, 2-58. (in Chinese)

Task Force on Eco-compensation Mechanisms and Policies (TFEMP), CCICED, 2007. Eco-compensation Mechanisms and Policies in China. Beijing: Science Press, 15-97. (in Chinese)

The Administrative Center for China’s Agenda 21 (ACCA), 2012 Agenda 21 (ACCA), 2012.International Comparison of Ecological Compensation: Pattern & Mechanism. Beijing: Social Sciences Academic Press, 10-65. (in Chinese)

Wang Nüjie, Liu Jian, Wu Daqian,et al.., 2010. Regional eco-compensation based on ecosystem service assessment: A case study of Shandong Province.Acta Ecologica Sinica, 30(23): 6646-6653. (in Chinese)Regional ecological compensation is an important mechanism for balancing and coordinating the development of different regions.Determining the basis of ecological compensation is the key of regional ecological compensation,however,it has always been controversial.There have been regional differences because of economic development,and the poor regions are not willing to be affected by large-scale ecological construction under the pressure of poverty and competition,and therefore regional ecological compensation is difficult to coordinate.Eco-builders are often not beneficiaries of ecological construction,so they therefore tend to lack sufficient motivation.If they can get some economic compensation and financial assistance from the beneficiaries,then they can afford the economic losses and are willing to actively carry out ecological construction.Thus,which region should be compensated is significant for regional ecological compensation.By taking both the ecosystem service value and the economic development level of different regions into consideration,the ecological compensation priority sequence(ECPS),which can quantify the priority level of the ecological compensation,was presented as the basis of regional compensation.As a relatively developed,but uneven development province,Shandong Province of China needs to improve the ecological compensation mechanism for regional sustainable development.In view of that,Shandong Province was taken as an example to verify whether the ECPS is effective.The ecosystem service value and the ECPS of different cities and counties of Shandong Province were calculated,and the priority areas and mechanism of regional ecological compensation in Shandong Province were analyzed at three spatial scales:the ecotope spatial scale,the prefecture-level city spatial scale and the county spatial scale.The results showed that on the ecotope scale,the Lake District in the LuXiNan plain in western Shandong Province should have priority to get compensation,and the LuDong hill area,the LuZhongNan hill and mountainous area in eastern Shandong Province should first provide compensation.On the prefecture-level city scale,among all the 17 cities of Shandong Province,Heze should first get compensation.For the county scale,the ECPS of all the counties in the four typical cities(Qingdao,Jinan,Heze and Dongying) of Shandong Province was calculated.Of the four cities,a common result was that the urban area of a city had the lowest priority level among all the counties of that city,indicating that the urban area benefited from the ecosystem service value of the counties around it and should provide compensation.As a typical area,the Hekou district of Dongying city was high in ecological output but low in economic development.Using our methods,it had the highest priority level and should get the first compensation.As ECPS calculation only requires the regional GDP and non-market services value,other regions can conveniently apply this formula.When conducting regional ecological compensation on the national scale,provincial GDP and non-market services value should be accounted for.This study provides a relatively simple and reliable indicator for deciding the priority area of regional ecological compensation,and could be used as a reference in the study and application of regional ecological compensation of Shandong Province and other areas.


Wang Yu, Ding Sibao, Lu Yanli, 2011. Research on the standard for regional ecological compensation in China.China Development, 11(6): 1-5. (in Chinese)Regional ecological compensation is a key pathway to optimizing the developmental structure and seeking regional balanced growth,however the setting and implementation of the compensation standard is of considerable difficulty for now.This paper analyses the challenges and negative impacts stemming from the current ecological compensation practice mainly enacted and implemented by governments at all levels,pointing out that excessive dependence on the administrative mandates will lead to the functional deficiency and spatial imbalance of regional interests.Finally,this paper puts forward several pragmatic solutions to address the existing issues.

Wätzold F, Drechsler M, 2005. Spatially uniform versus spatially heterogeneous compensation payments for biodiversity-enhancing land-use measures.Environmental and Resource Economics, 31(1): 73-93.The importance of compensation payments for biodiversity-enhancing land-use measures has grown over the past decade, particularly in connection with agri-environmental policy. Given that both the costs and the benefits of biodiversity-enhancing land-use measures are subject to spatial variation, the criterion of cost-effectiveness calls for spatially heterogeneous compensation payments. However, when deciding whether to implement uniform or heterogeneous compensation payments, the regulator has to compare the disadvantage of uniform payments in terms of cost-effectiveness with the disadvantages of spatially heterogeneous payments. To help resolve this issue, this paper provides a simple ecological-economic model that allows the reduced cost-effectiveness associated with uniform payments for biodiversity-enhancing land-use measures to be assessed for different types of benefit and cost functions.


Wu Minghong, Yan Geng, 2013. Research on the determination method for provincial eco-compensation standard in China.Theoretical Investigation, (2): 105-107. (in Chinese)

Wu Xiaoqing, Hong Shangqun, Duan Changqun,et al.., 2003. Inter-regional ecological compensation system and regional coordinative development.Resources and Environment in the Yangtze Basin, 12(1): 13-16. (in Chinese)The relationship between environment and resource has developed into a major social conflict at a regional level, which exerts dramatic influence and restriction on regional harmonious development.This paper discusses the reasons, the types, the data variations and the evolving patterns both in time and in space of inter regional environmental problems and environmental relations.Reasons that inter regional environmental relations and problems keep unsolved are analyzed , and so are the functions and influences of inter regional ecological compensation. This article exposes that it is the lack of compensation that leads to the differentiation and contradiction between the benefits and favors of the upper and the lower areas of rivers, besides the difficulties in solving environmental problems. It is proposed that the inter regional ecological compensation system be composed of policy and law formulating organs, compensation calculating organs and compensation levying and managing organs. This article devotes its major efforts to studying problems concerning calculations of inter regional ecological compensation, including the calculations of tactic thinking, methods, processes, result expressing, as well as to analyzing the difficulties in establishing inter regional ecological compensation mechanism in the aspects of environmental resources managing system, green national economy accounting system (paying diversion system), data technology of environmental influence, and meditation and solution of environmental problems and conflicts.

Wunder S, Engel S, Pagiola S, 2008. Taking stock: A comparative analysis of payments for environmental services programs in developed and developing countries.Ecological Economics, 65(4): 834-852.Payments for environmental services (PES) are an innovative approach to conservation that has been applied increasingly often in both developed and developing countries. To date, however, few efforts have been made to systematically compare PES experiences. Drawing on the wealth of case studies in this Special Issue, we synthesize the information presented, according to case characteristics with respect to design, costs, environmental effectiveness, and other outcomes. PES programs often differ substantially one from the other. Some of the differences reflect adaptation of the basic concept to very different ecological, socioeconomic, or institutional conditions; others reflect poor design, due either to mistakes or to the need to accommodate political pressures. We find significant differences between user-financed PES programs, in which funding comes from the users of the ES being provided, and government-financed programs, in which funding comes from a third party. The user-financed programs in our sample were better targeted, more closely tailored to local conditions and needs, had better monitoring and a greater willingness to enforce conditionality, and had far fewer confounding side objectives than government-financed programs. We finish by outlining some perspectives on how both user- and government-financed PES programs could be made more effective and cost-efficient.


Wünscher T, Engel S, Wunder S, 2008. Spatial targeting of payments for environmental services: A tool for boosting conservation benefits.Ecological Economics, 65(4): 822-833.Payments for environmental services (PES) have become an increasingly popular market-based instrument to translate external, non-market environmental services into financial incentives for landowners to preserve the ecosystems that provide the services. However, lack of spatial differentiation in the targeting mechanism may lead to efficiency losses. Addressing this challenge, we construct an applied site selection tool, which takes into account three variables that vary in space: environmental services provided, risks of losing those services, and participation costs. Using data from Costa Rica's Nicoya Peninsula, we empirically test the tool's potential to increase the financial efficiency of the forest-focused PES program in place. Results show that, given a fixed budget, efficiency increases radically if per hectare payments are aligned to landowners' heterogeneity in participation costs, involving opportunity, transaction and direct costs of protection, respectively. Selecting sites based on environmental service potential also moderately increases efficiency. Overall additionality could in the best case be doubled, but remains generally limited due to current low deforestation risks prevailing in Costa Rica. To take advantage of the high efficiency potentials of flexible payments, we propose inverse auction systems as a cost-effective approach for the determination of micro-level participation costs.


Xie Gaodi, Cao Shuyan, Lu Chunxia,et al.., 2015. Current status and future trends for eco-compensation in China.Journal of Resources and Ecology, 6(6): 355-362.Eco-compensation, known as payment for ecosystem services, is defined in China as an institutional arrangement for regulating the relationship of economic interests among ecological protectors, beneficiaries and destructors in order to protect ecological service function and foster harmony between people and nature with non-market and market tools including transfer payment, taxes and fees. Reasonable compensation to ecological service providers significantly contributes to the protection of ecological assets and effective supply of ecological services by adopting transfer payments or market transactions on the basis of comprehensively considering the costs of ecological protection, costs of development opportunity and ecological service values. It is helpful for implementing a strategy for main functional areas. The building of eco-compensation mechanisms is therefore highly valued as the most important institutional guarantee for promoting the ecological civilization. Existing eco-compensation mechanisms mainly fall into three categories: exchequer based transfer payment, vertical and horizontal, and market based compensation in China. The institutional framework has been primarily established, inclusive of a forest ecological benefit compensation fund system, grassland eco-compensation system and transfer payment system of national key ecological function areas. Under the framework, various areas and departments have actively explored the building of an eco-compensation system and achieved important progress for forests, grassland, wetlands, river basins and water resources, exploitation of mineral resources, oceans and national key ecological functions areas. However, the eco-compensation system dominated by vertical transfer payments is still far from perfect in China. The interest regulation pattern of 鈥渄eveloper to protect and beneficiary to compensate鈥 has not been formed. Its role in the protection of the ecological environment has not been brought into full play. China should improve eco-compensation systems by intensifying eco-compensation inputs, strengthening government responsibility, diversifying eco-compensation tools, and establishing institutional systems.


Xie Gaodi, Zhen Lin, Lu Chunxia,et al.., 2008. Expert knowledge based valuation method of ecosystem services in China.Journal of Natural Resources, 23(5): 911-919. (in Chinese)Valuation of global ecosystem services by R Costanza(1997)has attracted attention of the Chinese ecological researchers over the years.And many Chinese scientists have been using the methods to valuate the ecosystem services for forest,grassland and farmland ecosystems.However,it has been turned out that there are several shortcomings in direct adaptation of the methods,for instance,some ecosystem services have been insufficiently valuated or even ignored via using Costanza's method.To fill this gap,we have,on the basis of Costanza's method,developed a new method or 'unit value' based method for assessment of ecosystem services.Expert interviews with structured questionnaire were contacted in 2002 and 2007 respectively,and altogether 700 Chinese ecologists were involved in the interviews for testing the method.It has been found that the values of ecosystem services from expert knowledge based unit value method and biomass based method are comparative.Therefore,expert knowledge based assessment of ecosystem services could be used as a method for assessing ecosystem services with known land use areas,and a good result could be generated within a short period of time.However,for scientifically sound and concrete results,the spatial disparity of ecosystem services should be taken into account.


Xiong Ying, Wang Kelin, Lan Wanglian,et al.., 2004. Evaluation of the lake recovery area eco-compensation in Dongting Lake wetland.Acta Geographica Sinica, 59(5): 772-780. (in Chinese)Eco-compensation is an environmental economics instrument for internalization of external cost. Lake recovery is one of the important parts of restoring ecological function of the Yangtze River. Whether the project could be successful depends on the compensation to the farmers, who have lost their original benefits and contributed to the ecosystem recovery. The availability of reasonable approaches to settle down the relocated population is a significant premises for the implement of the programs to restore the ecological environment in the middle reaches of the Yangtze River. It refers not only to the provision of basic living space for the relocated population, but also to the creation of opportunities of employment and development for the population. Dongting lake area is an important national commercial agricultural base with high population density. The practical implementation of programs of lake recovery and flood control in this area has been challenged by the heavy task of population relocation, so it is an ideal area to do a case study to reach the academic objectives proposed above. The wetland in Dongting Lake region is the largest lacustrine wetland in China, covering an area of 8.07脳105 hm2. This article takes Dongting Lake area as a case to study and explore the basic issues of the eco-compensation, that is who should pay, who should be paid, how much is the payment and payment vehicle. Based on the analysis, the cost of eco-compensation in Dongting Lake area is 6084.6 yuan. In order to realize the eco-compensation, we must improve the compensation of social environment, local policies, compensational measures, and mental situation, so it can provide advantageous conditions to eco-compensation.


Xu Dawei, Li Bin, 2015. Research on regional ecological compensation performance appraisal based on propensity score analysis.China Population, Resources and Environment, 25(3): 34-42. (in Chinese)Since 1990 s,there have been massive environmental protecting projects that employed the theory of ecological compensation implemented all around the country. Meanwhile,along with the implementing of ecological compensation projects,the research on ecological compensation is boosted. Nowadays,these researches in China is mainly in pre-compensation phase such as the establishment of theory system,the probing of mechanism,the objective of compensation,the forming of compensation and also the confirmation of compensatory payment. But there are rarely post-compensation researches in terms of compensation performance appraisal,especially the performance appraisal research making use of standard economical paradigm. So,this paper proposes the necessity and theoretical implication of assessment of regional ecological compensation performance. On this basis, through introducing Entropy Method,propensity score analysis,panel data regression method of economical technologies,we launched the appraisal of ecological compensation performance. Taking ecological compensation of fiscal project in eastern Liaoning Mountain Region as a case,this paper initially reports that the best counties in ecological performance are policy effecting counties,but ecological preformance has not been obviously improved in some policy effecting counties such as Qinghe,Dengta,and Gongchangling by employing entropy method and statistical analysis to calculate and compare the ecological performance of 27 counties that resemble each other in terms of etonomic,social,ecological condition. By comparing policy effecting counties and non-policy counties,it suggests that compensation policy and administrative jurisdiction have significant effects on ecological performance. Panel regression results show that by controlling administrative jurisdiction,time trend,environment protection investment and forest resource,the effect of policy is 0. 475. To avoid the problem of sample selection,the Kernel matching method is introduced and the ATT is 0. 783. Both of the methods support the validity of policy. Finally,to study the effecting factors of ecological compensation performance,this paper implements a panel data regression with regard to policy effecting group sample,and compares the regression results with results that come from whole sample regression.The regression results in terms of policy effecting group show administrative jurisdiction,and fiscal deficit ratio is significantly positive.Economical factors are not significant except for average GDP. Time variables are significantly positive,which suggests that policy effect emerges gradually and the trend of validity is converging.

Yang Guangmei, Min Qingwen, Li Wenhua,et al.., 2007. Scientific issues of ecological compensation research in China.Acta Ecologica Sinica, 27(10): 4289-4300. (in Chinese)In China, researches on ecological compensation should be dated back to the 1980s鈥 when the discussions on ecological compensation in ecological and economic senses were initiated. Since the United Nation鈥瞫 Conference on the Human and Environment in 1992, ecological compensation researches have entered into a phase of theoretical discussions on "damager pays" principle. With the implementation of ecological protection programs and the reorganization of conflicts between ecological protection and economic development, ecological compensation researches have paced into a phase of theoretical and practical discussions with special emphasis on "beneficiary pays" principle. Nowadays, ecological compensation has been a hot-spot in all walks of Chinese society. While the key scientific issues in ecological compensation research, such as connotation, standard, approach, implementation mechanism and theoretical basis, etc remains unsolved. Connotations of ecological compensation in China have been moving from emphasizing on ecological senses to economic senses. The clarification of the relationships between ecological fees, environmental fees and resource fees is a key for implementation of ecological compensation mechanism. It is recognized that the basic principle of environmental economics, or externality theory and public goods theory, could be considered as the basis for ecological compensation research. And the consideration of ecosystem services as the basis for compensation is dependent on the controversy of compensation for the benefits or for the values. Determination of eco-compensation standards is at its early stage, and the current research involves the elements such as quantitative assessment of ecosystem services, opportunity cost, demand and supply analysis, etc. The resolution of aforementioned issues is critical for ensuring feasibility and validity of eco-compensation mechanism and its successful implementation, which calls for integration of theoretical and practical researches with association of the Chinese situation and within regional specific challenges. The paper suggests that the future research should focus on, but not limited to, the following perspectives: (1) definition of terminology of ecological compensation with consideration of regional requirement; (2) study on theoretical basis and calculation of eco-compensation standard based on practical validity; (3) eco-compensation mechanism with participation of stakeholders; (4) integrated research on ecosystem service and ecological compensation mechanism.

Yang Xin, Cai Yinying, 2012. Farmers’ election of farmland ecological compensation mode and its relevant factors: A case of 383 households in Wuhan city.Resources and Environment in the Yangtze Basin, 21(5): 591-596. (in Chinese)Choosing a farmland's ecological compensation mode with low transaction cost, consideration to both fairness and efficiency and easy operation fairness, efficiency and operability, realizing the market operation of farmland ecological products, which do not only influence the effect of the ecological compensation, but also are the key to a successful implementation of ecological compensation mechanism. This paper analyzed the farmers' cognition and preferences of farmland ecological compensation mode and the relevant factors that affect their selection based on the survey data. What's more, the author points out the government compensation mode's defects in farmland ecological compensation field, and then discuses the suggestions of introducing the market mode. The results showed that: (1) only 10.71% farmers have heard about the conceptions of ecological compensation, and ecological crisis. (2)49.02% farmers are not satisfied with the current compensation mode because of its low amount, 94.65% of them are more inclined to accept higher level of cash compensation mode; (3) The Logistic model was used to analyze the factors that affect their selection of farmland ecological compensation mode. According to the results, farmer's gender, age, family incomes, raising population and education level respectively affect their selection of cash, technology, policy and comprehensive farmland ecological compensation modes significantly, then we propose that constructing the trade platform for farmland ecological compensation, promoting the innovation of technology of ecological commodity and diversifying the management modes are the key to realizing the market operation of farmland ecological compensation.


Yuan Weiyan, Zhou Xiaoke, 2014. Review of research progress abroad in payments for ecosystem services.China Population, Resources and Environment, 24(11): 76-82. (in Chinese)Nowadays,Payment for Services( PES) is internationally recognized as an important means of ecological and environmental protection,has been widely applied around the world and inspired many scholars' concerns. This paper tries to collect and analyze the relevant research literatures published in recent years on international mainstream journals and reviews the research progress abroad in the concept,mechanism design and effect evaluation of PES in detail. First,we find there are inconsistencies in the connotation of PES concepts except the common view providing incentives to encourage environmental services,and theoretically they are mainly based on Coasean or Pogouvian economics. Second,due to different theoretical starting point,technology deficiency,institution and cultural background heterogeneity,there are also divergences in mechanisms design of foreign PES projects,including participants,payment levels,conditions and payment method,which makes it difficult to evaluate efficiency of PES,as a result,the role of PES is being questioned widely. Therefore,we believe that the important issues in future PES research are perfecting the theoretical system and highlighting the heterogeneity.

Yuen Tsui K, 1991. China's regional inequality, 1952-1985.Journal of Comparative Economics, 15(1): 1-21.No abstract is available for this item.


Zhang Dongmei, Shu Yanfei, 2011. Regional Economy Analysis Method. Beijing: China Social Sciences Publishing House, 15-77. (in Chinese)

Zhang Sixue, Lin Hanchuan, Fang Wei,et al.., 2015. Study on the system of assessing value of eco-compensation mechanisms.Resources Science, 37(10): 1912-1919. (in Chinese)There are two main difficulties with establishing an eco-compensation mechanism in China. First,what is the mechanism of eco-compensation,that is,how and why does it work?Second,how do we assess the compensation value of ecological resources? It is necessary and urgent to establish ecological compensation mechanisms in China because the resource services' function of the ecosystems have been abused,environmental damage,a scarcity of environmental resources and lack of supply,and the excessive use of resources. The elements of the eco-compensation mechanism have been identified;the operation mechanism has been analyzed from funds chains and behavior chains. Ideas and the overall design of the framework focused on five dimensions:who compensates for whom,how much is the compensation amount,where are the compensation funds sourced from,how to compensate,and compensation effects. Taking eco-compensation of resources as an example and using Analytic Hierarchy Processes,we established a system of assessing the value of eco-compensation,and found that the environmental value should be highlighted in assessing eco-compensation value. Further,China should pay full attention to the values or contributions of these indicators,such as clean air,air negative ions,vegetation cover and resource scarcity.

Zhang Wei, Zhang Hongye, Zhang Yifeng, 2010. The determination of social ecological compensation standard based on “equivalent value of geographical factor endowment”.Acta Geographica Sinica, 65(10): 1253-1265. (in Chinese)Ecological compensation is a hot subject in academic studies,and the determination of spatial allotment standard is the key point in the research of ecological compensation.There are two kinds of thoughts in the determination of regional spatial allotment standard at present: "Evaluation of ecological construction cost" and "Evaluation of ecosystem services value".This paper analyzes the relationships between social ecological compensation and regional socio-economic development,and established an econometrics model with the data of 2007 from various provinces in China.Through this model,the impacts of geographical factor endowment on the regional socio-economic development in various provinces were analyzed from the angle of social justice,and the concept of "Equivalent value of Geographical factor Endowment"(EGE for short) was proposed.On this basis,we analyze the application prospect of EGE in the policy decision making of regional ecological compensation.The results show that:(1) The implementation of the social ecological compensation is not only an effective guarantee for each region to obtain the equal rights of survival,development and decent environment,but also an essential assurance to the coordinated,balanced and sustainable development among various regions;(2) the regional difference of geographical factor endowment is an important cause for the regional spatial variation of socio-economic development,so the geographical factor endowment is an important basis for the determination of social ecological compensation standard;(3) based on the EGE,we can determine the spatial allotment standard of social ecological compensation scientifically,and avoid the "sweeping approach" phenomenon in the policy making of ecological compensation effectively.

Zhao Cuiwei, Wang Shijie, 2010. Benefits and standards of ecological compensation: International experiences and revelations for China.Geographical Research, 29(4): 597-606. (in Chinese)With environment pressures growing significantly,Payments for Environmental Services(PES) have attracted increasing interest as an innovative mechanism to resolve environmental problems.How to enhance the benefits of compensation is its key issue.By reviewing the main issues in PES design and implementation at home and abroad in recent years,we found that(1)both prioritizing sites to be compensated and setting subsidy standards reasonably are very important for enhancing the benefit of compensation;(2)logic standard of payments for environmental services is between opportunity cost and ecosystem services value.But the results of valuation on ecosystem services vary with methods.So opportunity-cost method is the way widely used to determine ecological compensation standard.Opportunity cost depends on natural and socio-economic conditions and changes among areas. By synthesizing the information presented,we make a comparison in respect of choosing compensation regions,setting compensation standards,and environmental effectiveness at home and abroad.It was shown that less attention was paid to regional differences in China so that sometimes subsidies were insufficient to cover the real costs on environment protection of peasant household.Two problems emerged,that is,subsidies were lower than costs of providing eco-service,and regions with smaller deforestation risk were compensated.Both can lead to low efficiency of distribution compensation funds. In foreign countries,a payment scheme that took variation in land conditions into account,which had better effects on ecological compensation benefits and on encouraging behavior of protecting environment.Finally,according to the existing problems in China and taking international examples,a framework to set a reasonable standard of ecological compensation was proposed.