The Top 1% of Emitters Caused Almost a Quarter of Global Emissions Since 1990

Just 1% of the world’s population was responsible for almost a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions over 1990-2019, new research finds. The study, published in Nature Sustainability, highlights the inequality in peoples’ greenhouse gas footprints — a cornerstone of the climate justice movement. In 2019, people living in sub-Saharan Africa produced 1.6 tonnes of CO2 equivalent (tCO2e) each on average, the study finds. In North America, average per capita was more than 10 times higher, while the top 10% of the continent’s emitters produced almost 70tCO2e. To have a “high” chance of limiting global warming to 1.5C above pre-industrial temperatures,…

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