Greenhouse Gas Emissions per Person and per Unit Gross Domestic Product
There are at least two ways to analyse society’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions: the amount of GHGs emitted per person (GHG per capita), and the amount of GHGs per unit of gross domestic product (GDP) (GHG intensity). These indicators show the relationship between the size of Canada’s population and the amount of GHGs emitted; and how efficiently sectors in the economy are restricting GHG emissions while producing goods and services for our consumption.
The level of emissions per unit of GDP was 27% lower in 2010 than in 1990. Over that period, GHG intensity went down from 0.71 megatonnes (Mt) of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2 eq) per $billion GDP in 1990 to 0.52 Mt CO2 eq per $billion GDP in 2010.
The amount of GHGs emitted per person in Canada declined to 20.3 tonnes of CO2 eq in 2010 compared to 21.3 tonnes in 1990.
These improvements can be explained by a number of factors such as more efficient industrial processes, a shift to a more service-based economy and improvements in the emissions associated with energy generation (such as those realized through fuel switching).
Greenhouse gas emissions per person (GHG per capita) and per unit of GDP (GHG intensity), Canada, 1990 to 2010
Note: GHG intensity is calculated using the real inflation-adjusted GDP in 2002 dollars. The graph represents the ratio of annual GHG emissions per person and per unit of GDP compared to the values in 1990. Index (1990=100)
Source: Environment Canada (2012) National Inventory Report 1990–2010: Greenhouse Gas Sources and Sinks in Canada.
- National Greenhouse Gas Emissions
- Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Economic Sector
- Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Province and Territory
- Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Large Facilities
- Global Carbon Dioxide Emissions from Fuel Combustion
- Impacts of Geenhouse Gas Emissions
- Environment Canada - Climate Change
- Canada’s Action on Climate Change
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