New Data Shows China & United States' Carbon Emissions Still Way Higher Than Everyone Else's

china carbon emissions 2009 image

View larger at The Guardian.

Some new figures on global and national carbon emissions have been released by the EIA: China is far and away the largest national emitter; the US significantly trails in second place; India comes in a distant third. If there's any good news in this it's that global emissions are more or less stable, decline one-tenth of a percent in fact. That's all based on 2009 data, the latest available. Here's some further stat parsing:China is the world's largest national carbon emitter at 7,711 million tonnes. That's an increase of 13.3% over 2008 levels and a 170.6% increase since 2000. In 2006 China was in second place. On a per capita basis, based on this data, that about 5.5 tonnes--similar to low-emitting European nations.

The United States' emissions declined 7% because of the Great Recession, for the second year in a row, and now stand at 5,425 million tonnes. That's about 17.9 tonnes per person.

India trails far behind both the US and China, despite an 8.9% increase in carbon emissions. In 2009 India's national emissions stood at 1,602 million tonnes, or about 1.35 tonnes per person.

Rounding out the top ten: Fourth place is Russia (1,572 million tonnes), fifth is Japan (1,098), sixth is Germany (766), seventh is Canada (541), eighth is South Korea (528), ninth is Iran (527), tenth is the UK (520).

As a whole, European emissions (not counting Russia, the Baltic states, or several former Soviet states which are geographically part of Europe but have been separated out in this analysis) were down 6.9%, to 4,310 million tonnes of CO2 in 2009.

US carbon emissions 2009 image

If India's comparative national and per capita emissions don't give you a glimpse of the sort of carbon emission disparity in the world--a good proxy for natural resource consumption and global equity in many ways--the entire continent of Africa emitted 1,122 million tonnes of CO2 in 2009, a decline of 3.1%. South Africa alone was responsible for 40% of the continent's total, with Egypt accounting for 17%, Algeria 10% and Nigeria 7%.

Read more: The Guardian has the full graphic which I excerpted above.

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More on Carbon Emissions:
China No Longer a Developing Nation - Per Capita Emissions Higher Than France's
Carbon Emissions From Deforestation Revised Down
China's Carbon Emissions Need to Peak by 2020 for World to Meet Global Reduction Goals: IEA
West 'Responsible' For Third of China's CO2 Emissions
Global CO2 Emissions to Hit Record High After Record Low in 2009

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