OCT 17, 2018 10:23 AM PDT

100 top companies responsible for climate change

The report released from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) last week shook the world with the wake-up call that we only have 12 years to make major changes in order to avoid the worst of climate change. In thinking about this, it’s imperative that we consider more than just our own individual and community efforts to protect the planet; we need also to look towards big industries.

While it’s true that people in the US have higher average emissions than people in, say, Bangladesh, the average US resident emits very little compared to mega-companies like ExxonMobil, Shell, BP, and Chevron.

In a previous study, the Carbon Majors Report determined that 71% of global emissions come from just 100 companies that have a stronghold on the world’s economy. Furthermore, more than half of global industrial emissions since anthropogenic climate change became a known idea can be accounted for by 25 corporate and state producing entities.

Photo: Economics Help

“Fossil fuels are the largest source of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions in the world,” writes the report. “The fossil fuel industry and its products accounted for 91% of global industrial GHGs in 2015, and about 70% of all anthropogenic GHG emissions. If the trend in fossil fuel extraction continues over the next 28 years as it has over the previous 28, then global average temperatures would be on course to rise around 4ºC above pre-industrial levels by the end of the century.”

While three out of five Americans believe climate change affects their local community (and two-thirds of people living on US coasts), the disproportionate emissions that companies emit make it difficult to counteract the daily climate-friendly actions of a particular individual. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean you should stop recycling!

Sources: The Guardian (1) (2), GQ, Carbon Brief, Scientific American

About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
You May Also Like
APR 20, 2021
Earth & The Environment
To predict wildfires, look to the hills
APR 20, 2021
To predict wildfires, look to the hills
A study published recently in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface reports on a new technique that ca ...
MAY 16, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Measuring the Natural Illumination in the Night Sky
MAY 16, 2021
Measuring the Natural Illumination in the Night Sky
It may get dark at night, but there's still light in the sky in even the darkest places. This low glow comes from natura ...
MAY 19, 2021
Earth & The Environment
How big of a threat are pollutants to our drinking water?
MAY 19, 2021
How big of a threat are pollutants to our drinking water?
A study published recently in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) analyzes the speed at w ...
JUL 21, 2021
Cell & Molecular Biology
Human Contact Increases Antibiotic Resistance Carried by Galapagos Tortoises
JUL 21, 2021
Human Contact Increases Antibiotic Resistance Carried by Galapagos Tortoises
Even Giant Galapagos Tortoises, (seen here migrating in a photo by Juan Manuel García) are not safe from the world's ant ...
JUL 21, 2021
Genetics & Genomics
Researchers Detect DNA in Air Samples
JUL 21, 2021
Researchers Detect DNA in Air Samples
Scientists have shown that it's possible to assess what organisms might be living in a particular habitat by collecting ...
JUL 24, 2021
Earth & The Environment
New Tests Can Sense Previously Undetectable Toxins in Soil
JUL 24, 2021
New Tests Can Sense Previously Undetectable Toxins in Soil
Researchers from Duke University have developed four new tests capable of detecting toxic coal ash contamination in soil ...
Loading Comments...