It’s a little-known fact that the countries that currently emit the most CO₂ per capita are located on the Arabian Peninsula. Qataris emit around 38 tons per person, in Saudi Arabia almost 18.5 tons. Similar emission rates are measured in the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait. But these countries are not the biggest polluters in absolute figures. Here, China, India and the United States, all three populous nations, carry most of the blame. The cheap availability of oil and gas in the economies on the Gulf might play a role in explaining these results.
The United States, together with Canada and Australia, are the biggest polluters among industrialized nations. Here, every inhabitant emitted around 16 tons of CO₂ in 2018. Germany is among the biggest polluters in Europe with more than 9 tons of CO₂ emitted per person, while every French person is responsible for around 5. Here, the continued reliance of France on nuclear power versus Germany's progress to stop using nuclear energy becomes apparent. Sweden was one of the European countries with the lowest emissions, at only 4 tons per inhabitant. The lowest emissions per capita could be found in developing nations, with the lowest typically in Africa.
The emittance of CO2 into the air is one of the main causes of global warming. The concentration of CO2 in the global atmosphere remained relatively stable until the industrial revolution at around 200 particles per million. From the 19th century onwards, its density multiplied rapidly, reaching 413 particles per million most recently.