2011 carbon emissions total 38.2 billion tons; China, US top list

According to a report from the Nature Climate Change, China and the US remained the two largest carbon dioxide (CO2) emitters in 2011.

Over 38 billion tons of CO2 stemming from the combustion of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas were emitted worldwide last year, up 3% from 2010.

Over that period, China’s emissions jumped 10% to total 10 billion tons of CO2.

The US accounted for 5.9 billion tons of CO2, however national emissions actually decreased by 2%.

The US and Germany are the only top ten emitting countries that reduced their emissions over 2011.

The Nature Climate Change journal published the following list of the 10 largest emitting countries in the world for 2011:

1. China, up 10 percent to 10 billion tons.

2. United States, down 2 percent to 5.9 billion tons

3. India, up 7 percent to 2.5 billion tons.

4. Russia, up 3 percent to 1.8 billion tons.

5. Japan, up 0.4 percent to 1.3 billion tons.

6. Germany, down 4 percent to 0.8 billion tons.

7. Iran, up 2 percent to 0.7 billion tons.

8. South Korea, up 4 percent to 0.6 billion tons.

9. Canada, up 2 percent to 0.6 billion tons.

10. South Africa, up 2 percent to 0.6 billion tons.