China out-emits U.S.

The Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency has released a study claiming China has surpassed the United States as the world’s largest producer of carbon dioxide emissions—the most significant greenhouse gas.

According to the study, China’s rising energy demands led to a 9 percent rise in carbon dioxide emissions last year, while the United States saw a slight decrease. The Dutch agency’s report comes just a few months after international energy officials predicted China’s greenhouse-gas emissions would exceed those of the United States by 2009 or 2010.

Neither of the countries has ratified the Kyoto Protocol, which sets limits on greenhouse-gas emissions, the agency notes.