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Hannah Ritchie, Max Roser


6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Social Studies, Earth and Space Sciences, Economics, Mathematics

Resource Types

  • Interactive Media
  • Data

Regional Focus


CO2 Emissions Per Capita vs. GDP Per Capita

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  • This interactive graph and table allows students to explore the correlations between a country's per capita GDP and their per capita CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and cement production.
  • The data chart is available in linear and log scales and the data begin in the year 1800 for some countries.
Teaching Tips


  • This resource provides downloadable charts that are customizable by date and country.
  • Students may be able to see the differences in this information easier because larger values are represented by larger circles.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should know how to read a graph and be familiar with log scales.
  • Selecting a range of years will show vectors that track each country's emissions over that time period, which may make it difficult to read if many countries are selected at the same time or if the time frame is long.


  • Math classes could use this resource for lessons about linear and logarithmic equations or using data to make graphs.
  • Social studies classes could use this to discuss why some countries may be better at achieving a higher GDP per capita without emitting a high amount of CO2 per capita.
  • Science classes can use this resource to connect to lessons about the greenhouse effect, the carbon cycle, or fossil fuels.
Scientist Notes

This resource explores the linear relationship between CO2 emissions and GDP per capita from selected countries of the world. Students can examine this resource to gain insights on the communaties and annual change. However, the resource is recommended.


This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-3 Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Economics
      • D2.Eco.1.6-8 Explain how economic decisions affect the well-being of individuals, businesses, and society.
  • Common Core Math Standards (CCSS.MATH)
    • Statistics & Probability: Making Inferences & Justifying Conclusions (9-12)
      • CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.HSS.IC.B.6 Evaluate reports based on data.
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