Copenhagen

photo: Copenhagen

With more than 120 heads of government in attendance, the December 2009 Copenhagen Climate Change Summit was the largest meeting of world leaders in history. At the Summit, presidents and prime ministers from more than two dozen key countries -- representing more than 80 percent of the world's global warming pollution -- hammered out the Copenhagen Accord. Under the Accord, both developed and developing nations agreed for the first time to reduce their emissions and to register their national commitments by the end of January 2010. Countries also committed to delivering "prompt start" funding to assist developing countries in deploying clean energy technologies, reducing forest-related emissions, and adapting to the impacts of global warming. These promises represent important first steps on a new pathway to real progress in reducing emissions and moving to a low-carbon global economy.


President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama

United States

Currently the second largest emitter and largest cumulative contributor to global emissions, accounting for approximately 16 percent of the world's emissions (6,814 MMTCO2e). Per capita emissions are 23.1 metric tons of CO2e (10th highest in the world).

Action Commitment

Announced a target to reduce emissions in the range of 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020, 42 percent below 2005 levels by 2030, and 83 percent below 2005 levels by 2050. These targets are aligned with the energy and climate legislation passed by the House of Representatives.

Premier Wen Jiabao

Premier Wen Jiabao

China

Currently the largest emitter, China accounts for approximately 17 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, at 7,187 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e). Per capita emissions are 5.5 metric tons of CO2e – 92nd highest in the world.

Action Commitment

By 2020, China has committed to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 40 to 45 percent from 2005 levels and use non-fossil fuels for about 15 percent of its energy. China has also committed to increase forest cover by 40 million hectares and forest stock volume by 1.3 billion cubic meters by 2020 (from 2005 levels).

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Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh

India

India is currently the world's 7th largest emitter of global warming pollution and 5th largest for emissions from fossil fuel combustion. It accounts for approximately 4 percent of the world's emissions (1,866 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e)). Per capita emissions are 1.7 metric tons of CO2e (154th highest in the world).

Action Commitment

India has made a commitment to reduce its emissions per unit of GDP 20 to 25 percent below 2005 levels by 2020. To meet and exceed this goal, India is increasing fuel efficiency standards by 2011; adopting building energy codes by 2012; increasing forest cover to sequester 10 percent of its annual emissions; and increasing the fraction of electricity derived from wind, solar, and small hydro from the current 8 percent to 20 percent by 2020.

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President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva

President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva

Brazil

Currently the 4th largest emitter, accounting for approximately 7 percent of the world's emissions (2,842 MMTCO2e). Per capita emissions are 15.3 metric tons of CO2e (18th highest in the world).

Action Commitment

Announced a target to reduce emissions growth by 36 to 39 percent below business-as-usual levels by 2020 -- a level estimated to bring down Brazil's emissions to 1994 levels. Brazil also pledged to cut deforestation by 80 percent from historic levels by 2020.

European Union

European Union

Currently the 3rd largest emitter, accounting for approximately 12 percent of the world's emissions (5,049 MMTCO2e). Per capita emissions are 10.3 metric tons of CO2e (48th highest in the world).

Action Commitment

Announced a target to reduce emissions to 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2020 and would increase their commitment to 30 percent if other countries commit to ambitious efforts.

President Jacob Zuma

President Jacob Zuma

South Africa

Currently the 23rd largest emitter, accounting for approximately 1 percent of the world's emissions (423 MMTCO2e). Per capita emissions are 9.0 metric tons of CO2e (59th highest in the world).

Action Commitment

Announced a target to reduce emissions growth 34 percent below business-as-usual levels by 2020 and 42 percent by 2025 with finance, technology, and capacity-building support from the developed world.

President Felipe Calderon

President Felipe Calderon

Mexico

Currently the 11th largest emitter, Mexico accounts for approximately 2 percent of the world's emissions at 683 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e). Per capita emissions are 6.6 metric tons – 80th highest in the world.

Action Commitment

Mexico announced a target to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions up to 30 percent compared to business-as-usual levels by 2020 and 50 percent by 2050, provided there is adequate financial and technological support. Mexico has also committed to cut carbon dioxide emissions 51 million tons by 2012.

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President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono

Indonesia

Currently the 5th largest emitter, accounting for approximately 5 percent of the world's emissions (2,042 MMTCO2e). Per capita emissions are 9.3 metric tons of CO2e (56th highest in the world).

Action Commitment

Announced a target to reduce emissions by 26 percent by 2020 from business-as-usual levels.

President Lee Mung Bak

President Lee Mung Bak

South Korea

Currently the 13th largest emitter, accounting for approximately 1 percent of the world's emissions (569 MMTCO2e). Per capita emissions are 11.8 metric tons of CO2e (34th highest in the world).

Action Commitment

Announced a target to reduce emissions to 30 percent below projected levels by 2020, which equates to a target of approximately 4 percent below 2005 levels.

Note: All emissions data (except for the total emissions ranking for China and the United States) is based on 2005 levels and drawn from the World Resources Institute's Climate Analysis Indicator Tool (CAIT). Emissions ranking for China and the United States is based upon 2006 estimates from the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency.

Sources: United States, Letter to the UNFCCC; China, Letter to the UNFCCC; India, Letter to the UNFCCC; Brazil, Letter to the UNFCCC; European Union, Press Release of the Spanish Presidency of the EU; South Africa, Letter to the UNFCCC; Mexico, Letter to the UNFCCC; Indonesia, Letter to the UNFCCC; South Korea, Submission to the UNFCCC on the addition of their commitment to Appendix 2 of the Copenhagen Accord.   

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