I am huge fan of infographics – information as graphics – for the simple reason that they are a great way to get a handle on lots of complex information by just looking. Rather than reeling off lots of statistics and figures, graphics are used to give you a better understanding of the issue and allow you to make comparisons and reach conclusions. Carboun, an online sustainability advocacy group led by Karim Elgendy, has recently released a clear and easy-to-understand infographic on the carbon emissions of Middle Eastern residents.
The main finds are that whilst some residents in the oil-exporting nations of the Middle East are producing a lot of carbon, the majority are reflecting their developing nation status and producing limited amounts. Unsurprisingly, the oil-exporting nations such as Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain were the highest carbon producing nations per capita although Qatar topped the charts.
Indeed, Qatar is number one in world rankings when it comes to carbon emissions per capita. Libya also stood out as 39th highest nation in the world in terms of its per capita carbon emissions. Oman was 19th whilst Saudi, another oil-exporting nation, came in at 14.
Middle Eastern residents producing the least amount of C02 included Yemenis, Palestinians, Egyptians, Moroccans and Tunisians. Strangely, there were no statistics included on nations such as Iran and Israel although others such as Algeria, Egypt and Libya (which are technically outside the Middle East region) were included. This may be due to the limited amount of comparable data available but even so, it would be great to see an increase in the amount and quality of infographics on the Middle East and other green issues.
Carboun is an advocacy initiative promoting sustainability and environmental protection in the Middle East. It aims to increase awareness of the importance of environmentally responsive design and development as a major tool in reducing the environmental impact of development on energy and resource use.
For more on the carbon emissions of the Middle East see: