Interesting fact from the Can Manufacturers Institute:
"In 1972, one pound of aluminum yielded only 21.75 cans. Today, by using less material to make each can, one pound of aluminum makes approximately 33 cans—a 52 percent improvement."
Energy savings from more efficient manufacturing processes have contributed to a drop in energy use. According to the World Bank, carbon dioxide emssions per person have decreased in Germany, Sweden, United Kingdom and the United States.
The Cato Institute credits free enterprise as one of the reasons for the decline "because a concern for public opinion coupled with a desire to limit inputs (both of which affect profits) incentivize businesses to reduce emissions."
But the good news doesn't end there. The Environmental Protection Agency reports, "In the United States, since 1990, the management of forests and non-agricultural land has acted as a net sink of CO2, which means that more CO2 is removed from the atmosphere, and stored in plants and trees, than is emitted."