In 2019 Americans emitted the equivalent of 75 tons of CO2 per person (75 tCO2e/cap) versus the global average of 28 tons of CO2 equivalent per person, according to the latest report by economist Thomas Piketty’s World Inequality Data Base.
Other large emitters are Canada with 62 tCO2/cap, Australia with 62 tCO2/cap, Russia with 42 tCO2/cap, China with 36 tCO2/cap, Germany with 34 tCO2/cap, and the UK with 27 tCO2/cap.
According to a UN report assessing the policy changes required to meet climate change goals these numbers will have to be reduced.
“It is worth noting that Canada and the United States of America have submitted strengthened NDC targets, while independent studies suggest that they are not on track to meet their previous nationally determined contributions (NDC) targets with currently implemented policies,” note the authors of the UN report. “These two countries therefore need to make significant additional efforts to meet their new NDC targets.”
The United States modified its original NDC target from reducing emission of greenhouse gases by between 26% and 28% of 2005 levels by 2025 to reducing greenhouse gas emission by between 50% and 52% from 2005 levels by 2030, during the COP 26 in October.