International Greenhouse Gases Statistics

Color Coding Key
GREEN Ranked 1st for statistic
RED Ranked last for statistic

The carbon intensity of growth is often used as the primary indicator of each country’s ability to curb greenhouse gases. The United States, Canada, and Norway have the highest carbon dioxide emissions per capita.

  Carbon intensity of growth
  1990 2010 Annual change, 1990 to 2010 Total CO2 emissions CO2 emissions per capita GHG emissions per capita
Australia .7057 .4886 -1.46 101 4.57 9.6
Canada .6011 .4152 -1.47 136 4.00 4.7
Denmark .3803 .2578 -1.53 13 2.28 2.9
France .2822 .1883 -1.58 98 1.57 2.3
Germany .4304 .2716 -1.76 203 2.47 1.9
Italy .3102 .2480 -0.95 111 1.83 1.4
Japan .3341 .2966 -0.53 319 2.52 1.0
Netherlands .4161 .2968 -1.37 50 2.99 2.4
Norway .2285 .2494 0.10 16 3.19 5.8
Sweden .2432 .1641 -1.53 14 1.53 2.1
United Kingdom .4272 .2416 -2.07 135 2.16 1.8
United States .5988 .4174 -1.44 1,482 4.71 3.7


View UNFCCC statistics

Based on carbon emissions per GDP unit (PPP). Annual change as a percent. The term carbon intensity of growth was coined by the Human Development Report 2007/2008.

UNdata credits the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center in the indicator's name, but labels the source as Millinneum Development Goals and UN Stats Division.

Carbon intensity of growth, 1990 View Graphical Data

Carbon intensity of growth, 2004 View Graphical Data

Annual change, 1990-2004 View Graphical Data

View UNFCCC statistics

Total carbon dioxide emissions View Graphical Data

In picograms, for 2011.

Total carbon dioxide emissions per capita View Graphical Data

In picograms per capita, for 2011.

View HDRView Graphical Data

Human Development Report 2011, for 2005. Methane, nitrous oxide and other greenhouse gases, including hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and other greenhouse gas emissions not including carbon dioxide.


Goto CarbonMap site

Interactive map on home page (click map to play) explores each country's carbon extractions, emissions, and consumption to compare "responsibility for and vulnerability to climate change." Other interactive maps and projects on topics like women's rights and climate change are viewable at

"Cool Our Fever," Thom Hartmann

Extensive and well written discussion on Green House Gases.

We could not find new car registrations by country. There is an expensive publication that may have the information.

"Sweden's carbon-tax solution to climate change puts it top of the green list," Gwladys Fouché

April 29, 2008. Fouché outlines the steps Sweden has taken in order to be the most aggressive country at cutting carbon emissions. Reasons include: the emergence and growth of bioenergy such as district heating, a steep carbon tax founded in 1991, and a substantial rebate for consumers who purchase an economic-friendly automobile.

Items of interest from China: Energy Foundation Report 2007

Energy Law mandates 15 percent energy from wind, biomass, solar and small hydropower by 2020.

Since 2006, China has quadrupled its wind power and met its 2010 target in 2007.

By 2010, China plans to reduce CO2 by 1.5 billion tons, 5x more than the EU under Kyoto and 10x more than CA.

China has aggressive home appliance efficiency and commercial and residential building standards

In 2008, the U.S. Congress mandated U.S. cars to reach 35 mpg CAFÉ by 2020

In China cars are required to meet 36 mpg now

China uses 1/8 the energy per capita as the U.S. and 1/4 that of the EU

Since 1750, China has contributed 8.2 percent of world total CO2; the U.S., 27.5 percent.

China added 90 gigawatts of electrical capacity in 2007, the third year in a row of power increase greater than total capacity of the U.K.

Coal supplies 70 percent of China's total energy

China is developing integrated gasification and combined cycle power and carbon capture and storage

"Carbon Taxes 'Tax What You Burn, Not What You Earn,' " Todd Littman

Victoria Transport Policy Institute, August 27, 2008. Littman proposes that a carbon tax should be implemented similar to the one in British Columbia in July 2008. The carbon tax is designed to be integrated incrementally, allowing for consumers and businesses to adapt over time with more energy efficiency.

"Growing Number of EU Countries Levying CO2 Taxes on Cars and Incentivizing Plug-ins"

April 21, 2010. Tendency grows for taxes related to carbon dioxide and consumption of fuel are implemented in a growing number of European Countries. The total number of countries to levy such a tax is now 17 and includes the following 6 countries from this study: Denmark, France, Germany, The Netherlands, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

"As U.S. Climate Policy Lags, 'Green' Investors Take Their Money Elsewhere," Meera Bhaskar

August 19, 2010. International financial institutions like Deutsche Bank have gotten increasingly frustrated with the lack of policies executed by legislators in the U.S. for renewable energy inovations and have decided to take their investments to other countries who seem more dedicated in developing more efficient energy such as Germany, Italy, Spain, and China.


Cumulative GHG over a long period of time, not necessarily 1750, but possibly 1950.

Could not find Vehicle Miles Traveled/person.

Wolff et al. (see Human Development Index note)also use air miles per person per year, energy units of oil burned per year, carbon monoxide emissions per year, chlorofluorocarbon emissions per year, number of oil spills, forests cleared, acid rain, energy units of coal burned per year, pounds of particulates inhaled per year, percent GDP spent on pollution control, municipal solid waste per person per year, percent of glass recycled, and percent of paper and cardboard recycled.