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The record jump in global carbon emissions: By the numbers
After a brief decline in CO2 production at the height of the recession, global carbon output is higher than ever
 
A coal power plant in Germany: 2010 saw the largest jump in C02 emissions in years, with coal among the biggest contributors.
A coal power plant in Germany: 2010 saw the largest jump in C02 emissions in years, with coal among the biggest contributors.
Patrick Pleul/dpa/Corbis

During the global economic downturn, cash-strapped factories slowed their production, and sometimes closed altogether, reducing global carbon emissions — a rare bright spot of sorts in the recession's darkest days. Now, it's clear that decline was an outlier. New figures released by the Global Carbon Project, which creates an annual report card of the world's CO2 output, show that 2010 saw a "record" jump in emissions from fossil-fuel burning, thanks mostly to unprecedented leaps from developing nations. Here, a quick look at the report, by the numbers:

7
Percent that CO2 emissions dropped in the United States in 2009

1.9
Percent that global emissions of CO2 fell in 2009

5.9
Percent that global emissions of CO2 rose in 2010

510 million
Extra tons of CO2 pumped into the air in 2010, "almost certainly the largest absolute jump in any year since the Industrial Revolution, and the largest percentage increase since 2003," says Justin Gillis at The New York Times.

9.14 billion
Total tons of CO2 pumped into the air in 2010

1
Average percent that global emissions of CO2 rose each year during the 1990s

3
Average percent that global emissions of CO2 rose each year during the 2000s

10.4
Percent that emissions rose in China in 2010

9.4
Percent that emissions rose in India in 2010

11.6
Percent that emissions rose in Brazil in 2010

9.2
Percent that emissions rose in South Korea in 2010

4
Percent that emissions rose in the United States in 2010. The U.S. is the world's second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, after China.

Sources: BloombergNew York Times, Reuters

 

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