Intelligent transformation is not only a significant revolution faced by the manufacturing industry at present, but also the main trend of industrial upgrading worldwide. As a typical representative of intelligent transformation, industrial robots’ large-scale applications can drive enterprises to improve production methods and enhance production efficiency, which is also an important channel for green production. This paper first constructs a partial equilibrium model to deduce the direction and mechanism of the impact of industrial robot applications on pollutant emissions by enterprises. Based on this, it takes industrial enterprises above designated size from 2000 to 2014 as the research object, uses industrial robot import data to measure the usage of industrial robots, and empirically tests the predictive conclusions of the theoretical model. The results confirm that the application of industrial robots in enterprises can achieve the emission reduction effect through the two mechanisms of TFP and energy utilization efficiency. Further research indicates that industrial robot applications can improve the production process of enterprises and encourage them to enhance their level of cleaner production, but their impact on terminal governance capabilities is limited, and the application of material handling robots does not lead to the emission reduction effect. Additionally, the emission reduction effect of industrial robot applications has a greater impact on higher labor-intensive enterprises and industries with higher competitiveness, higher pollution, or higher energy consumption. This paper reveals a new path for balanced development between economic growth and pollution reduction.
The Environmental Power of Automation: The Emission Reduction Effect of Industrial Robot Applications
Journal of Shanghai University of Finance and Economics Vol. 25, Issue 06, pp. 88 - 103 (2023) DOI:10.16538/j.cnki.jsufe.2023.06.007
Cite this article
Li Weibing, Li Mingyang. The Environmental Power of Automation: The Emission Reduction Effect of Industrial Robot Applications[J]. Journal of Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, 2023, 25(6): 88-103.