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Greenhouse Gases & Where They Really Come From: Infographic

 
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World Greenhouse-Gas Emissions Flow Chart 2010 [source: Ecofys + ANS Bank]

World Greenhouse-Gas Emissions Flow Chart 2010 [source: Ecofys + ANS Bank]

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We love data.

And we love simple but informative graphic presentations of complex data even more.

Which leads us to today's infographic, a presentation of the sources and activities that produce greenhouse gases as a result of human activity.

Inspired by an earlier similar graphic from 2005, the infographic was put together for ASN Bank and Dutch energy consultant Ecofys.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD FULL INFOGRAPHIC

The chart is broken down into Sources, Sectors, and Greenhouse Gases, using data from 2010 (sourced at the bottom).

At the left, the chart shows the sources of the greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere, breaking it down into fossil fuels--coal (25 percent), oil (19 percent), and natural gas (21 percent)--and direct emissions, which includes things like landfills and animal flatulence (35 percent).

Then it shows the various activities and locations that produce the gases from those sources--including industry, buildings, transportation, agriculture, energy supply, and land-use change.

The transportation sector, by the way, is responsible for about 15 percent of overall global greenhouse-gas emissions.

Finally, the gases themselves are shown as the result of those sources and processes. Carbon dioxide (CO2) is 76 percent of the total, but methane (CH4) represents 15 percent as well.

PAST INFOGRAPHICS: herehere, here, here, here, here, and here

Have a look at the full diagram and think about which activities you participate in.

Do you ever consider the greenhouse-gas impact of your activities and your daily life?

For instance, even if you drive a vehicle with high fuel efficiency (or a zero-emission vehicle), what industry do you work in? How big is your home? How much do you fly?

None of it's simple, is it?

Leave us your thoughts on the infographic in the Comments below.

[hat tip: Wink Cleary]

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Comments (10)
  1. @John, thanks a lot for publishing the chart. It reinforces that we spend a lot of time and effort on reducing greenhouse emissions from personal use transportation when, in fact, the percentage that transportation contributes to greenhouses gasses is much lower than one might think. Of course, as shown in the chart, a big problem is that transportation uses the majority share of oil.

    We'll have to see the details on what President Obama is proposing for power generation and other greenhouse initiatives later today; you can bet it won't be popular.

    Also, you have to love the cow symbol under "direct emissions." But it's not totally correct; I think most of CH4 cow emissions actually comes from burps.
     
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  2. Stop eating red meat and you'll help the world cool down.
     
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  3. ...and you'll live longer and better.
     
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  4. Red meat as a cause for heart disease is being studied right now and there seems to be a rather strong correlation between eating red meat 2 to 3 times a week or more and Coronary artery disease. I seems that red meat alters our normal flora in the gut and that can lead to heart disease.
    The implication is that our eating patterns influence the bacteria we carry in our digestive tracts, and that this affects the way we metabolize our food, which in turn affects our cholesterol metabolism. Scientists have discovered a similar result with lecithin, which is abundant in eggs.
     
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  5. The point is not total greenhouse gas but overload of gas and particles where people live and breath. Thats more informative for health and longevity
     
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  6. This is a great chart - one needs to spend some significant time to start to understand it. What is missing, since this is the whole World, is where the bulk of it comes from geographically or country-wise. US uses a lot of better grades of coal with some emission controls, while China uses little. If the US were to totally stop use of all fossil fuels, what would this graph look like? I believe the environmentalists of the World should be focusing their efforts and their money on Asia! Do they have any money to clean up Asia? The US has taken strong leadership in many areas & so has Europe. Has Asia matched what we have done or should we encourage them to do more. They have huge & growing populations that are consuming more & more.
     
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  7. Coal = electricity from coal burning power plants most likely. Too bad Japan had that poorly designed reactor have a problem because there were several Nuclear power plants that were shelved because of that one. I am for personal solar panels on your car port and for your home because they can allow you to be almost energy neutral and any spare electricity can be sold back to the grid too.
     
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  8. It should be mentioned that in Europe and in the industrialized countries about 1/3 of the CO2 emissions comes from transportation. Ie this infographic is nice to have, but not compleatly true for most of the people reading this web page. An average household could lower their CO2 imprint by as much as 40% by driving electric - ref. Energy company Vattenfall "One Tonne Life"
     
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  9. @Andy: This graphic applies to the globe as a whole, so in that sense, it's not locally accurate for ANYONE who reads the site. We thought it was useful information anyhow.
     
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  10. @John

    Absolutely, I love it too and it gives a nice picture of the emissions. I just thought I'd clarify that the ratios are a bit different at different places :).
     
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