Overview of carbon emissions produced by Eswatini
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What percentage of global greenhouse gas emissions does Eswatini produce?

Eswatini produces 0.01% of global emissions, and has been ranked the world’s 165th largest emitter of greenhouse gases since 1990. Since this date, their annual emissions have increased by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 0.91%.

Summary – GHG Emissions in Eswatini

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in USD$4.94bn
Total Greenhouse Gas Emissions in 20192.69m
Change in Emissions since 20185.2%
Percentage of Total Emissions (2019)0.01%
Rank – Emitters in 2019164
Total Greenhouse Gas Emissions since 199067.7m
Compound Annual Growth – Emissions since 19900.91%
Percentage of Total Emissions (1990-2019)0.01%
GDP Per Capita (USD)$4.21k
Emissions Per Capita2.3
641ce8410b23202bba4593a9 Eswatini and ten largest%2520emitters since 1990

In the last recorded year (2019), Eswatini was the world’s 164th largest producer of yearly carbon dioxide emissions and contributed 0.01% of all global emissions. The top three emitters in the same period were China, the United States, and India. These three nations produced 25.2%, 12%, and 7% of global emissions respectively.

641ce8410b23202b704593aa Eswatini change in emissions 1990 to present

In 2019, Eswatini emitted 2.69m metric tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, or MtCO₂e. This represented an increase in emissions from 2018 by 5.2%.

Emissions per capita in Eswatini – average household carbon footprint

The population of Eswatini is 1.17m. On a per capita basis, they produce 2.3 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (tCO2e) per person. This places them 149th out of 191 on emissions produced per capita. The top three emitters per capita are Solomon Islands, Qatar, and Kuwait.

What is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Eswatini?

In 2019, Eswatini produced 2.79m metric tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions. This was an increase of 4.1% from 2018. 34.5% of these emissions came from CO2, 47.6% came from CH4, and 14.4% came from N2O.

The sector that produced the most emissions in 2019 was the energy industry. Energy produced 1.05m of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This amounted to 37.7% of total GHG in Eswatini. The second and third largest emitting sectors were agriculture and waste– producing 37.3% and 21.5% of total GHG respectively.


The industry that produced the most energy related emissions was the transportation sector, emitting 618k tonnes of greenhouse gas. The second and third largest emitting sectors were manufacturing/construction and building – producing 190k and 133k tonnes of GHG each.

Land Use Change and Forestry

Land use change and forestry (LUCF), such as deforestation and conversion of natural ecosystems to agricultural or urban areas, can have a significant impact on carbon emissions.

  • Trees and other vegetation absorb and store carbon through the process of photosynthesis, and when they are cut down or burned, that stored carbon is released into the atmosphere.
  • Deforestation and other forms of land use change can also reduce the ability of ecosystems to absorb and store carbon in the future. Additionally, the conversion of land for agriculture or urban development can lead to the release of carbon stored in the soil.
  • On the other hand, sustainable forestry practices, such as reforestation and afforestation, can help to remove carbon from the atmosphere and store it in trees and other vegetation.

In the case of Eswatini, their LUCF had a positive impact on their emissions, reducing their footprint by 103k tonnes.

After accounting for land use change and forestry, the total amount of greenhouse emissions in Eswatini in 2019 was 2.69m metric tonnes.

Is there a correlation between greenhouse gas emissions and economic growth?

In 2019, gross domestic product (GDP) in Eswatini declined by -4.3% from the previous year. Measured in US dollars, the economy went from $4.67bn to $4.47bn. In the same period carbon emissions increased by 5.2%. Over a ten year period from 2009 to 2019, GDP grew by 24.7%, while emissions have increased by 22%.

To put this into context, the compound annual growth rate of GDP in Eswatini over the previous ten years was 2.2% and the CAGR for greenhouse gas emissions was 2%.

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