Since pre-industrial times, the atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases has grown significantly. The present level of carbon dioxide concentration (around 375 parts per million) is the highest for 420,000 years, and probably the highest for the past 20 million years. CO2 is the greenhouse gas that contributes most to the enhanced greenhouse effect, because of the quantity of the emissions. CO2 comes from burning fossil fuels, cement production and land use change.
In 2000, Latin America and the Caribbean contributed 5, 5% of the world’s total CO2 emissions (excluding land use change). The total global CO2 emissions were estimated at 24 000 million tonnes.
CO2 emissions from land use change and forestry from the region comprised 30% of the world's total. This was attributed to the destruction of the rainforest
(WRI: Climate Analysis Indicators Tool)