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Tourism is a bigger contributor to climate change than researchers previously thought

Your summer vacation is killing the environment.

Global tourism makes up 8 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, research published Monday shows, three times more than scientists previously thought. Without major changes to the tourism industry, reports CNN, international travel will be unsustainable.

Research published in the journal Nature Climate Change found that tourism's carbon footprint grew 3 percent annually between 2009 and 2013. That carbon footprint, which factors in carbon dioxide and methane emissions in the industry, is a major contributor to climate change. Previous studies estimated that tourism made up around 2.5 percent of global emissions, but that was without taking into account the food, accommodations, services, and local transportation travelers use once they arrive at their destination.

High-income countries like the U.S., China, Germany, and India are responsible for half of the increase in emissions, while countries that depend on the tourism sector are largely producing emissions because of the incoming travelers. Researchers called for innovations in air travel to cut down on emissions significantly. Read more at CNN.