Update: Global Man-made CO2 emissions 1965 – 2019, BP data


Every June BP publish their statistical review of world energy.


One element of their comprehensive set of spreadsheets is a table of CO2 emissions by world countries since 1965.  For the purposes of this post, the CO2 emissions data provided by BP here is assumed to be correct.

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That data is here and aggregated into seven Nation groups according to nominal state of development and attitudes towards controlling CO2 emissions, as follows:

  • Developed
  • Nominally Developing
    • China HK
    • India
    • Rest of World (~160 Nations)

The aggregate data of CO2 emissions growth is summarised from 1965 onwards are shown above.  The marked differential between the Developed and nominally Developing worlds is shown below.

It shows:

  • The virtual stabilisation of world emissions 2012 – 2019
  • The continuing diminution of CO2 emissions from the Developed world from 2005 onwards
  • The growing escalation of CO2 emissions from the “Developing” world, including China and India. This growth of CO2 emissions will inevitably continue and accelerate.

Contrasting the Developed and Developing worlds

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Developing world emissions overtook Developed world CO2 emissions in 2005 and they have been escalating ever since.  CO2 emissions from the Developing world are now ~900,000,000 tonnes higher than the Developed world’s emissions.  The prognosis is for Developing world CO2 emissions to continue to grow and to accelerate further.

CO2 emissions in the Developing world are accelerating as the quality of the lives for people are progressively improving.  This emissions growth will further escalate as the Chinese develop Coal-fired power stations at home and via the “Belt and Road programme” throughout the developing world.  Even so at least ~1.12 billion people, ~15% of the global population, still have no access to reliable electricity.

Having been relatively stable for the previous 5 years, global CO2 emissions grew last year by about 2.0% and again in 2019 by ~+1.4%.  All of this growth was in the Developing world, whereas emissions in the Developed world was reduced.  In 2019 the overall growth was ~484,000,000 tonnes despite all the international “commitments” of the Paris Climate Agreement.

Since 1990 CO2 emissions from the Developed world have decreased, whereas the Developing world has shown a fourfold increase since 1985.  This differential has arisen as a result of:

  • to the off-shoring of major CO2 emitting industries to parts of the world that have less rigorous environmental standards or who care less about CO2 emissions
  • the growing use of Coal-firing for electricity generation in the Developing world, particularly as supported by Chinese technology exports via its “Belt and Road Programme”
  • the use of Fracked natural gas for electricity generation as opposed to Coal-firing as in the USA
  • the earlier 1990s “dash for gas” policy in the UK.

On the other hand, Weather Dependent Renewables, have made very little contribution to CO2 emissions reduction, if at all.  When looked at in the round, from their manufacture to demolition, they are hardly CO2 emissions nor energy neutral over their service life.

The use of Biomass for electricity generation, although considered to be “carbon neutral”, actually increases the immediate contribution of CO2 to the atmosphere, producing almost twice as much CO2 as Coal firing.

Representation by Region

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The pie diagram above shows the proportion of CO2 emissions as of the end of 2019.  These 2019 data are set out in tabular form below.

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The graph below of total CO2 emission history show that up until 2018 there has been an overall reduction of CO2 emissions from most of the Developed economies since 1990.

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This analysis divides the world’s nations into seven logical groups with distinct attitudes to CO2 emissions control:

Developed nations:  population ~1.19 billion – ~37% CO2 emissions.

United States of America, now President Trump is gradually rescinding many of Obama’s climate initiatives, including USA support for the Paris Climate accord:  population 328m:  14.5% of global CO2 emissions.

Japan, the former Soviet Union, (CIS), Canada and Australia, (JP CIS CA AU), are developed nations, ambivalent towards controls on CO2 emissions and not necessarily adhering to the Paris Climate Accord:  population 356m:  12.4% of global CO2 emissions.

The European Union(28), (including the United Kingdom):  population 508m:  9.7% of global CO2 emissions., currently believing in action to combat Global Warming, and their governments are generally enthusiastic supporters of the Paris Climate Accord as the European Union.  However it should be noted that the populace of the EU(28) is losing enthusiasm for Green agendas for example:  the Yellow Vests reaction in France to increase of fuel taxes on grounds of combatting climate change and subsidy support for Renewables is being curtailed and it is likely that many of the pioneering commitments of the past 25 years made to controlling climate change will not retain subsidy support and therefore will be abandoned in future.

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