The Climate Conversation Trivia

Everyone loves trivia. In the spirit of the approaching negotiations in Copenhagen, here is some fun trivia for you. Pass it along to your friends!

Q: In what year did TIME Magazine publish its first cover story on global warming?
A: 1987 Tweet This!

Q: What single source is responsible for more CO2 emissions than all the world’s transportation combined?
A: The burning and clearing of forests Tweet This!

Q: Imagine an area of tropical forest the size of Manhattan. What percentage do you think disappears every day as the result of deforestation?
A: An area SIX TIMES the size of Manhattan disappears every day. That’s one Manhattan every 4 hours. Tweet This!

Q: How many trees are needed to offset the average CO2 emissions from one car for one year?
A: Over the course of its entire lifetime, one tree would offset the average emissions from driving one car for one year. (Answer updated based on reader feedback – thank you!) Tweet This!


  1. Frank Bennett says

    wrong – wrong – wrong !!!

    if an average tree absorbs 10,000 pounds of CO2 “OVER THE COURSE OF ITS LIFE”, then it will take 40 or 50 or 60 trees to offset the emissions of one car EACH YEAR.

  2. fopboy says

    agree with Frank – your tree calculation doesn’t make sense.

    thats pretty sloppy for an organisation dedicated to promoting this kind of info

  3. Casey Claborn says

    Frank, you misinterpret what they said. Suppose you go out and plant 60 trees. Then you drive a car for 60 years. It balances out. That was the point of that one. The point was not that one tree will make up for all your driving a petroleum fueled vehicle each year, as long as the tree remains actively photosynthesizing.
    No need to assume that CI is trying to deceive you.

  4. Kat Powers says Post author

    Thank you for your feedback. We intended to state that over the course of its entire lifetime, one tree would offset the emissions from driving one car for one year. We can see how the answer we posted was misleading, and have changed it accordingly. Thank you for keeping us on our toes.

  5. Brian Cox says

    The actual chemical calculation of burnning a gallon of hydrocarbon fuel calcualtes out to 19 lbs of CO2 per gallon as the carbon chains are broken Oxygen bonds readily to it thus making a six pound gallon of gas turn into 19 lbs of pollution in the air. Thus if you calculate a 15 gallon tank filled up once every other week, as in my case,you use roughly 360 gallons of gas working out to produce 6,840 lbs. of CO2 Pollution. Now some drive more and many drive less thus equalling out at an average of 10,000 lbs of where your previous comment can be rationalized fairly easily. I am an AP Chemistry and AP Environmental Science Teacher and work through explaining similar concepts to my students. Let me know if you still have further questions to be answered.

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