Looking at economic growth, size of economy and such out of interest – a couple of insights can be gained. When you add pollution data, even more becomes apparent.
Living in the United States, it is common belief that we are the richest nation in the world, and our people are among the richest, which is only partially true. The US has the largest economy, but it is only 10th in GDP (Gross Domestic Product) per Capita worldwide.
Gross Domestic Product and Pollution
GDP is the sum of all the goods and services produce in a country in a year – or the market value of a years economic production. The poorer countries tend to produce low tech products and services – dirty industries like mineral extraction or manufacturing.
It’s cheaper to hire or produce in countries with limited environmental protections. Dump toxic manufacturing by-products into the poor people’s drinking water? No problem, we can produce leather for a fraction of the cost for you, good sir. Chemical Emissions are part of the EmissionsTax template.
All goods and services create pollution upon creation, either direct or derivative.
Carbon Pollution – Greenhouse Gas Emissions
While many types of pollution are localized, carbon emissions are global. If all the manufacturing is done in one country because the labor rates are super low, like China, it’s still going to cause global warming.
This is why it doesn’t matter if someone recycles everything they touch – worldwide economies arbitrage pollution. The solution is to price worldwide pollution and sanction countries that don’t participate.
GDP Per Capita by Country
Gross Domestic Product per Capita – how much each person produces in a year in a country, on average. This is basically how rich each citizen is. The graph above shows 1st and 2nd world countries. The US, at # 10, with a GDP per Capita of 69.8, is a first world, rich country. China, ranked at #62 with a GDP per capita of 12.6, is a 2nd world country – not rich, not poor
Some other Notable Countries
Belgium is at 20
Greece is at 50
Mexico is at #69 with a GDP per Capita of 10.1, and has the world’s richest man, person.
Environmental Policy is Social