How key countries are cutting carbon emissions

A A A

China on Thursday unveiled for the first time hard-number targets for reducing the carbon intensity of its greenhouse-gas emissions, a key element in the December 7-18 climate talks in Copenhagen.

Here is how other major emitters line up:

INDUSTRIALISED COUNTRIES

UNITED STATES: World's number two polluter says it will offer to cut emissions by 17 percent from 2005 levels by 2020, deepening to 30 percent by 2025, 42 percent by 2030 and 83 percent by 2050.

The offer "is in the context of an overall deal in Copenhagen that includes robust mitigation contributions from China and the other emerging economies."

The US target for 2020 means only a fall of four percentage points compared to 1990, the benchmark year widely used as the interim target in the UN process, say experts.

EUROPEAN UNION: Unilaterally cutting its emissions by 20 percent by 2020 compared to 1990 levels, and offering to go to 30 percent if other industrialised parties follow suit.

RUSSIA: President Dmitry Medvedev, at a summit with the EU on November 18, reportedly agreed to a cut of 20-25 percent by 2020 from 1990 levels, raising its target from 15 percent. This has not been confirmed officially.

JAPAN: Offers a cut of 25 percent by 2020 relative to 1990, provided there is "a highly ambitious accord with participation by all major countries."

CANADA: Sees a reduction of 20 percent by 2020 compared to 2006, equivalent to a fall of three percent compared to the 1990 benchmark. The federal parliament has passed a non-binding motion urging a 25-percent cut relative to 1990, while the province of Quebec has said it will follow the EU's position.

AUSTRALIA: Bill before parliament for reducing carbon pollution by between five and 25 percent by 2020 from 2000, with the higher levels dependent on the outcome in Copenhagen. Experts estimate that a cut of 25 percent over 2000 equates to 24 percent over 1990 levels.

NORWAY: Says it is willing to reduce emissions by 30 percent by 2020 over 1990 levels, and say it is willing to consider going to 30 or 40 percent. Also aims to be carbon neutral by 2030.

NEW ZEALAND: Reduction of 10-20 percent by 2020 on 1990 levels, depending on outcome in Copenhagen.

DEVELOPING COUNTRIES

CHINA: The world's biggest carbon emitter says it will take voluntary steps to cut the intensity of its CO2 emissions per unit of GDP by 40 to 45 percent by 2020 from 2005 levels.

BRAZIL: Voluntary reduction of 36-39 percent by 2020, mainly from tackling deforestation in the Amazon, as compared to its forecast level of emissions in 2020.

INDIA: Says it is taking actions to reduce emissions and may quantify them into a "broadly indicative number," but no announcement yet. India argues that its per-capita emissions are very low and legally-binding cuts have to be borne by rich countries alone.

INDONESIA: National programme would reduce emissions by 26 percent by 2020 from forecast trends mainly by tackling deforestation, according to a September 29 speech by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. With international support Indonesia could reduce emissions by up to 41 percent, Yudhoyono said.

SOUTH KOREA: Has promised a voluntary 30-percent reduction by 2020 over "business-as-usual" trends.

MEXICO: Announced in June a cut of 50 million tonnes a year by 2012, equivalent to around eight percent of national emissions.

SOUTH AFRICA: Has not yet announced specific targets.

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Cleaner

£15000 - £16500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you've got first class custo...

Recruitment Genius: Mobile Applications Developer / Architect - iOS and Android

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity to join a medium s...

Recruitment Genius: Telesales Account Executive - £40K OTE

£11830 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Working in a friendly, sales ta...

Recruitment Genius: Web Designer

£15000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's leading web des...

Day In a Page

Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Tour de France 2015: Twins Simon and Adam Yates have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Twins have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Yates brothers will target the steepest sections in bid to win a stage in France
John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water