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Study looks at transportation's effects on global warming

By Doyle Rice, USA TODAY

A new study released Monday reports that 15% of the manmade carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Earth's atmosphere comes from cars, trucks, airplanes, trains, and ships. This is the first study to specifically measure the impact of transportation on global greenhouse gas emissions.

The remaining 85% of atmospheric CO2 comes from industry, buildings and agriculture, the report said.

The study was led by Jan Fuglestvedt and other scientists at the Center for International Climate and Environmental Research in Oslo.

The scientists reported that within the transport sector, road transportation (cars, buses and trucks) contribute the most greenhouse gases, which includes CO2, ozone, methane, and others.

And while the transport sector is responsible for a growing share of global emissions, many of the gases emitted by transportation aren't covered by regulations from the Kyoto Protocol. The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Elisabeth Holland, a senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, who was not part of the study, was impressed with the research: "This is a comprehensive study," she says, "that takes a careful look at how all the emissions from the transport sector are handled."

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