Unburnable Carbon – Are the World’s Financial Markets Carrying A Carbon Bubble?

James Leaton

Research Organisation
Carbon Tracker

Report Date
July 1, 2011

Document summary

Research calculates that to reduce the chance of exceeding 2°C warming to 20% the global carbon budget for 2000-2050 is 886GtCO2, leaving a budget of 565GtCO2 for the 40 years to 2050. All proven reserves owned by governments and public and private companies equal 2,795GtCO2. Some of the world’s leading stock exchanges have an estimated 20-30% of their market capitalisation connected to fossil fuels. Fossil fuel reserves owned by the top-100 listed coal and oil & gas companies represent emissions of 745GtCO2. Only 20% of the total reserves can be burned unabated, leaving up to 80% of assets technically unburnable

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