One of the most startling distinctions when you look at emissions data from developed and developing states is the relative share of CO2 from fossil fuels and CO2 from land use change and forestry.
In developed countries, 81% of total emissions consist of CO2 produced by the burning of fossil fuels. 19% of emissions are non-CO2 greenhouse gasses, with 11% of that coming from methane and 6% from nitrous oxide. The amount from land use change and forestry barely even registers.
In developing states, by contrast, CO2 from land use change and forestry comprises 33% of total emissions. CO2 from fossil fuels is a more moderate 41%, though it is growing quickly in many countries.
Part of what this shows is the importance of producing international agreements that take into account the differing emissions profiles of states in different stages of development. Toughening automobile emission standards might make a big difference in Germany, but very little in Chad. By contrast, providing funds to forest rangers in Malaysia or Indonesia might produce big emission reductions.
Source: World Resources Institute. “Navigating the Numbers: Greenhouse Gas Data and International Climate Policy.” 2005.