A study of the world’s power stations has shown the extent to which developed countries produce more carbon dioxide per head than emerging economies.
Australians were found to be the world’s worst polluters per capita, producing five times as much carbon from generating power as China.
The US came second with eight tonnes of carbon per head – 16 times more than that produced by India.
BBC News website: ‘Australians named worst emitters’
“Australians were found to be the world’s worst polluters per capita, producing five times as much carbon from generating power as China.”
OK so let us all live like the Chinese! Sheesh!
TOP 10 EMITTERS
National power sector emissions (in tonnes of CO2):
US – 2,530 million
China – 2,430 million
Russia – 600 million
India – 529 million
Japan – 363 million
Germany – 323 million
Australia – 205 million
South Africa – 201 million
UK – 192 million
South Korea – 168 million
Any idea as to why France is NOT in here – could it be due to france getting some 80% of its power from NUCLEAR plants? You know the plants which PM Kevi is NOT going to allow. And which the freaking left has prevented in Australia.
Paul Biggs says
Thanks Lawrie – your table makes more sense than per capita. Yes, France isn’t there because of 80% nuclear. I guess the UK’s diminishing nuclear power is also why the UK is below Australia.
What the chart indicates isn’t that the U.S. emits too much CO2 but that the rest of the world is still trying to catch up. What’s too much in a growing world, now or in the past?
Ian Mott says
And Canada isn’t there because they built Dams.
And, of course, there is that little matter of all that aluminum, the production of which involves vast amounts of electricity, and most of which is exported.
So what will smart Kevvie do? Shut the smelters and just export the raw materials without value adding, just to meet his blank cheque to the climate mafia?
Lawrie, the US also has nuclear and they are top of the charts, whats your point?
Ian, when did Rudd say he would shut down smelters?
Didn’t think there was much mystery about nuclear power generation adding very little to CO2 emissions – but happy to learn otherwise.
I don’t don’t nuclear doesn’t operate with many emissions. Solar thermal also doesn’t cause emissions, has no cost of waste disposal, no risk of ground water contaminatin, no risk of weapon proliferation, is renewable, and can provide baseload!
Sadly, Asutralia also has very little solar thermal
And how many hectares would a gigawatt solar/thermal system cover. And what is the largest working s/t system currently operating and where is it?
If we are in urgent need to stop emitting CO2 then we need proven low emitting technology and that says nuclear to me.
We do have lots of the stuff to fuel such plants.
Not a perfect solution but Flannery et al are always beefing on just how urgent is the need to do something before the dreaded tipping point gets us.
And who knows given a decade or so of nuclear we will then find that CO2 had very little to do with climate change and we can go back to buring cheap coal.
And remember we shocking polluters can turn off the whole nation so that we no longer emit any CO2 at all and not make an iota of difference to any climate change caused by CO2.
Ian Mott says
Anthony, if your comprehension levels were higher you would note that I was asking what Rudd would do. I was not attributing an action to him. Take a bath.
Lawrie – “And how many hectares would a gigawatt solar/thermal system cover. And what is the largest working s/t system currently operating and where is it?”
A square 20km X 20km of solar collectors would theoretically power the entire Australian electricity grid.
France does have 80% nuclear however they have no method yet of storing waste other than dry above ground storage. Also it relies on other countries for peaking power and it has had to shut down reactors because of lack of cooling water. All in all France might have a bit of a problem if temperatures rise much more or rainfall decreases.
While there are practical technologies that do not produce dangerous waste products it makes sense to use them before nuclear. Additionally nuclear would be the slowest and do the least mitigation of CO2 emissions as the power plants would take 10 to 20 years to build and cost 2 or 3 billion each. Australia has uranium but no nuclear fuel. Unless we use CANDU reactors we would have to buy nuclear fuel from overseas. We could of course spend 10 billion or so dollars on a fuel manufacturing facility however given that the nuclear powers want to restrict such enrichment activities we probably would not get approval. We could do it anyway however then we would be in the same league as Iran. Manufacturing the fuel for the initial plants takes a lot of electricity and would release a lot of CO2.
All in all nuclear is the worst option if your goal is to quickly reduce emissions. Energy efficiency is the cheapest and quickest method. It is always better not to have to generate the power in the first place. Renewables such as wind and thermal solar are very quick to build and can start to displace fossil fuels before a nuclear plant would get approval.
Also once we get our house in order then perhaps we can start insisting that the Chinese and Indians get their act together. While we are the worst per capita polluters in the world we are in a very weak position.
Louis Hissink says
“A square 20km X 20km of solar collectors would theoretically power the entire Australian electricity grid”
to which we add ‘during daylight hours’ and where is the electrical power supposed to come from during night?
And emitting CO2 is pollution? If you really believed that Ender, then we individually are all polluters by virtue of exhaling CO2.
I look forward to your obituary soon unless you are the hypocrit that all lefties are.
Louis Hissink says
We have no nuclear fuel?
Easily solved – we employ lightwater (LWR) nuclear reactors which only require a uranium fuel comprising about 3% U235 ( the rest as U238).
This isn’t a technical problem.
And LWR’s are so designed so that if there is a moderator failure, then the nuclear chain reaction stops. Chernobyl was a graphite moderated nuclear reactor, purposefully built to produce weapons grade nuclear material.
Ian Mott says
Yeah, right, Ender, Australia would not be allowed to go nuclear and if we did we would be treated like Iran. Give us a break, bozo, we have a third of the worlds uranium and last time I checked we were the closest of allies with the US, UK etc in not just Iraq and Afganistan but every other conflict since WWI.
Meanwhile, the current policy against Iran is based on the hardly insignificant fact that they are building centrifuges for weapons grade plutonium and the Iranian President (Mr I’m in a dinnerjacket) stated he wants to wipe Israel off the map.
It is amazing that you could dredge up such a pathetic load of bollocks.
The tag of Australia as highest per capita emitter has been around for a while depending on how you want to measure. It used to be a decade ago all about too much of the 4 Cs. Cars – cattle – clearing (land)-coal. And of course not counting coal exports – not our problem, just a moral maybe an ethical one. But that is just the half of it. What goes around comes around ( yep, it is a system and we are in the home straight). And to think we used to quaintly argue droughts were man made – from overstocking mainly. Now if current droughts and rainfall trends do get a bit or more attributed to global warming, we will be riding a quinella of biggest emitters/capita and worst impacted. The trifecta would be first or second most unlikely responder to Kyoto. Talk about seat of the pants!
Louis – “to which we add ‘during daylight hours’ and where is the electrical power supposed to come from during night?”
1. from thermal storage or wind or geothermal.
2. We only need about 40% of our generation capacity at night.
Also this is only an used as an indication of the huge resource that is the sun. A practical future grid will use all energy sources.
“Easily solved – we employ lightwater (LWR) nuclear reactors which only require a uranium fuel comprising about 3% U235 ( the rest as U238).”
And how does the natural uranium get to 3%? Why in nuclear fuel plants that use centrifuges to enrich the natural uranium and then also manufacture the fuel rods, that have to be precisely machined. True it is not a technical challenge however it is to do it the first time.
Iran says that it is using the centrifuges to enrich uranium for use in it its Russian reactor. The IAEC can find NO evidence that there is a secret nuclear weapons program. Weapons grade plutonium is VERY easy to find in minute quantities. So unless the US just wants to make up the evidence, like it did with the WMD in Iraq, there is nothing as yet to suppose that Iran’s leader is engaging in nothing more that a bullshit campaign for internal consumption.
Then again I thought nuclear power was safe and clean so what is the problem with Iran having it? If Iran can’t have then it is obviously not the safe energy source that proponents claim. For nuclear to be the CO2 saviour then it has to be deployed widely and in all countries.
“And emitting CO2 is pollution? If you really believed that Ender, then we individually are all polluters by virtue of exhaling CO2.”
Humans breathing are a part of the carbon cycle and do not emit fossil carbon that has been safely sequestered and taken out of the cycle like burning coal and oil. I cannot believe that you still cling to this ridiculous argument.
Ian Mott says
Gosh Ender, I am surprised Foreign Affairs has not snapped you up for a key advisor job on the basis of your penetrating insights and strategic vision.
Don’t junk the disability pension just yet, boyo.