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Dheera Venkatraman says: That the annual CO2 emissions per capita is around 5-6 metric tonnes. That’s astounding efficiency for a developed nation. Compare that to 18-19 for the United States and 9-10 for Germany, 8-10 for Japan in recent years.
That the individual recycling rate of all recyclable materials in Switzerland is above 94% for glass, 91% for aluminium, 85% for paper and cardboard, 80% for PET plastic, and 69% for batteries as of 2010. I read these numbers off a chart, so they may be +/-1%, but astounding numbers nonetheless. I don’t think the United States comes even close. (Even here at MIT, supposedly a world class research institution, students, future CEOs, and even professors and deans routinely refuse to recycle.)
Switzerland’s power grid is about 56% hydroelectric and 39% nuclear as of 2008. That’s less than 5% thermal, which typically account for the most polluting sources. Compare that to the United States, which runs on 41% coal and 25% natural gas, or China which runs on 69% coal.