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Carbon Dioxide Equivalent (CO2e)


Not all greenhouse gases warm the atmosphere equally, some gases (such as methane) have a greater global warming potential, or warming effect, than carbon dioxide. To account for this, the term CO2e is used and means that greenhouse gases other than carbon dioxide can be converted, or normalized, to the equivalent amount of CO2, based on their relative contribution to global warming. This provides for a single, uniform means of measuring emissions reductions for multiple greenhouse gases.


"Glossary and Abbreviations", Barnsley, Ingrid, United Nations University Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU-IAS) 2009, "UNUIAS Guide, Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation in Developing Countries (REDD): A Guide for Indigenous Peoples." January 2009

Alternative definition

A measure used to compare the emissions from various greenhouse gases based upon their global warming potential.

Alternative source

Glossary of statistical terms, OECD, 2011 (