What Drives CO2 Production
As of 2007, the world has more than 6.7 billion people living, working, and using energy on our planet. In our country alone, there are 300 million people using energy for so many different activities, it’s easiest to think of energy use by putting it into major categories.
The largest energy-use category in this country is generating electricity. About 40% of all the energy used in this country goes to making the electricity that makes our homes comfortable, provides light, and powers our computers, businesses and industry. The next largest category is energy being used for heating, followed by energy for transportation.
Of the electricity generated in this country, almost half comes from coal. Nuclear and natural gas tie for second place. These three non-renewable fuels account for almost 90% of the electricity created in our country.
All of this energy use releases carbon dioxide, which contributes to increasing the greenhouse gases and global warming. Other countries throughout the world also release carbon dioxide in amounts that vary according to their populations, their natural resources and how much industry has developed. Another major contributor is volcanic eruptions and emissions.
But greenhouse gases including carbon dioxide doesn’t stay where they are released. The earth’s atmosphere is constantly mixing and moving, so what is released on one continent drifts to others. That’s why global warming and climate change are problems for the whole world, not just the problem of one country or one continent.