Simon Retallack writing in Prospect:
Industrialised countries currently emit four times more [CO2] per head than developing ones. In 2005, an average American citizen was responsible for emissions of 20 tonnes of CO2 – about twice as much as an average European, five times more than a Chinese citizen, 20 times more than an Indian and 333 times more than an Ethiopian.
But if we’re tempted to point the finger at the US then lets be careful; looked at with a bit of historical context things are a bit different.
Over the course of the last century, the developed world was responsible for 80 per cent of accumulated CO2 emissions. Europe bears the greatest historical responsibility, with a 38 per cent share, followed by the US at 30 per cent in comparison, China was responsible for 8 per cent and India just 2 per cent.