The European Commission’s Joint Research Centre has released a report in conjunction with the Netherlands’ Environmental Assessment Agency which finds that greenhouse gas emissions in 2011 were at an all time high; rising 3% from the year before to 34 billion tonnes.
Once again China toped the table, accounting for 29% of the world total, a massive increase of 9% from the year before, and the equivalent of between 6-19 tonnes for every person; a similar level to major industrial countries.
The US came in second with 16%, the equivalent of 7.5 metric tonnes per capita; an actual 2% decrease compared to 2010.
The EU produced 11% of emissions, India 6%, Russia 5%, and Japan 4%.
The two fastest growing economies, China and India, accounted for over a third of total global emissions.
The UN has already set a target to limit the rise in average global temperature to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. However, the study notes that “if the current global trend of increasing carbon emissions continues, cumulative emissions will surpass this limit within the next two decades.”
By. Charles Kennedy of Oilprice.com
Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com