Vibration modes of carbon dioxide. Mode (a) is symmetric and results in no net displacement of the molecule's "center of charge", and is therefore not associated with the absorption of IR radiation. Modes (b) and (c) do displace the "center of charge", creating a "dipole moment", and therefore are modes that result from EM radiation absorption, and are thus responsible for making CO2 a greenhouse gas.
Image courtesy Martin C. Doege.