Counting the Gigatonnes: Building trust in greenhouse gas inventories from the United States and China
This paper casts light on the emissions inventory processes used in the U.S. and China in reports to the international community as well as the strengths and challenges of the approaches that each country has followed.
China and the United States are the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases (GHGs), contributing more than 32% of global greenhouse gas emissions, and approximately 40% of global CO2 emissions from energy use and industrial processes in 2005.
The official GHG inventories published by the United States and China are extremely important for tracking the progress of each country in delivering on the pledges made in Copenhagen and beyond.
Both countries will have to strengthen their systems for monitoring, reporting, and review of GHG emissions. With the pledges made at Copenhagen, a higher level of precision and accountability in emissions estimates will be required from the United States, while China will have to demonstrate a clear decrease in the trend of carbon intensity of its economy, along with a trend toward increasing use of renewable energy.