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Study: World's CO2 emissions increase

Sep 29, 2008 - UPI

U.S. scientists say annual carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels and manufacturing worldwide have grown 38 percent since 1992.

The analysis by the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee shows CO2 emissions increased from 6.1 billion tons in 1992 to 8.5 billion tons last year.

"At the same time, the source of emissions has shifted dramatically as energy use has been growing slowly in many developed countries, but more quickly in some developing countries, most notably in Asian countries such as China and India," the researchers said.

"The United States was the largest emitter of CO2 in 1992, followed in order by China, Russia, Japan and India," said Gregg Marland of ORNL's Environmental Sciences Division. "The most recent estimates suggest India passed Japan in 2002, China became the largest emitter in 2006 and India is poised to pass Russia to become the third-largest emitter, probably this year."

Marland said the numbers are researchers' best estimates, but precise numbers cannot be known with certainty. "Also, as countries with less certain data become more important to the overall CO2 picture, the estimates of the global total of emissions become less certain," he added.