Shocking Report: Rich 1% Emit as Much CO2 as 5 Billion!Environment | November 20, 2023, Monday // 16:13| views
A recent report from the poverty-combating NGO, Oxfam, highlights the startling carbon footprint of the world's wealthiest individuals. The analysis, titled "Climate Equality: A Planet for the 99 percent," reveals that the richest 1 percent of the global population produced carbon dioxide emissions in 2019 equivalent to the emissions of five billion people constituting the poorest two-thirds of humanity.
Based on a study conducted by the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI), the report delves into the consumption-related emissions across different income groups in 2019. Astonishingly, the wealthiest 1 percent, totaling 77 million individuals, accounted for 16 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, surpassing the emissions from all cars and road transport combined. Furthermore, the top 10 percent were responsible for half of the global carbon dioxide emissions in 2019.
Highlighting the scale of emissions disparity, the report illustrates that the yearly emissions from the top 1 percent could be equated to the savings achieved by operating approximately 1 million wind turbines.
Oxfam's data projections suggest it would take around 1,500 years for the poorest sections of society to match the carbon emissions produced by billionaires in a single year. The report underscores the vast disparity between the super-rich, whose lavish lifestyles and investments in polluting industries exacerbate global warming, and the majority of the world's population.
These excessive emissions pose a dire risk, with the report estimating 1.3 million heat-related deaths, predominantly by the decade's end.
Expressing concerns over the alarming statistics, Oxfam's interim executive director, Amitabh Behar, emphasized the perilous impact of the super-rich on the planet. The report's release coincides with the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference - COP28, set to commence from November 30 to December 12 in Dubai.
Additionally, research by the Stockholm Environment Institute predicts carbon emissions from the top 1 percent in 2030 will be 22 times higher than what is compatible with the Paris Agreement target.
Oxfam advocates for governments to address income inequality and climate change simultaneously. They propose targeting excess emissions from the super-rich and meeting climate targets. Their recommendations include imposing a 60 percent income tax on the wealthiest 1 percent, potentially reducing emissions equivalent to the UK's total and generating .4 trillion annually to facilitate the transition to renewable energy.
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