Among Americans, the rich produce about 25 per cent more heat trapping gases than the poor people at home. This was revealed by a comprehensive study of U S residential carbon footprints.
The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Residential carbon emissions contribute to one-fifth of global warming gases.
The scientists conducted the study in 93 million housing units in different locations. The study found that the homes of average higher income people emitted 6,482 pounds of greenhouse gases a year. In the lower income category, it came to round 5,225 pounds of green house gas per year.
Environmental scientist at the University of Michigan and lead author Benjamin Goldstein said that the bigger the houses, the larger the greenhouse gas emissions. It said that the average person in Beverly Hills puts four times as much greenhouse gases. The study said that the average person in Massachusetts’ wealthy Sudbury emits about 9,700 pounds of greenhouse gases each year, Meanwhile, the , average person in the poorer Dorchester neighborhood in Boston puts out only 2,227 pounds of gas a year.
There are arguments that the difference in green house gas emissions raised some fundamental questions related to justice in a society. The richer are producing much more greenhouse gases and the burden has to be borne by the poor people, who reel under climate change, heat waves and chronic medical problems. Unlike the rich, these poor people do not have the facilities to overcome the challenges.
Nine of the ten states that emit the most greenhouse gas per person rely heavily on coal or have cold weather. West Virginia leads with 10,046 pounds of greenhouse gas per person per year, followed by Oklahoma, Wyoming, North Dakota, Kentucky, Missouri, Iowa, Alabama, South Dakota and Colorado.
California is the greenest state with 2,715 pounds of greenhouse gas per person. New York, Oregon, Washington, Utah, Rhode Island, Idaho, Massachusetts, New Mexico and Connecticut are the ten cleanest states.
The study also says that Mission Bay in San Francisco was the cleanest as per greenhouse gas emission where the average person produces only 1,320 pounds of greenhouse gas a year. Colorado, Louisiana, Minnesota, North Carolina, Alabama, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Wyoming, West Virginia, Georgia, Missouri, Arkansas, Utah and Indiana are the regions that contribute the most to greenhouse gas. The mountains of western Boulder County, Colorado, is the place where 23,811 pounds of gas emission per person was seen, which is 18 times higher than in the San Francisco.