Monday, November 14, 2016

Low Growth in Global Carbon Emissions Continues for Third Successive Year

Global Energy-Related CO2 Emissions (Credit: Click to Enlarge.
Global carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels did not grow in 2015 and are projected to rise only slightly in 2016, marking three years of almost no growth, according to researchers at the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the Global Carbon Project.

The projected rise of only 0.2% for 2016 marks a clear break from the rapid emissions growth of 2.3% per year in the decade to 2013, with just 0.7 per cent growth seen in 2014.

The new data is published in the journal Earth System Science Data.  It shows emissions growth remained below 1 per cent despite GDP growth exceeding 3 per cent.

Decreased use of coal in China is the main reason behind the 3-year slowdown.

Prof Corinne Le Quéré, Director of the Tyndall Centre at UEA who led the data analysis, said: "This third year of almost no growth in emissions is unprecedented at a time of strong economic growth.  This is a great help for tackling climate change but it is not enough.  Global emissions now need to decrease rapidly, not just stop growing."

China - the biggest emitter of CO2 at 29 per cent - saw emissions decrease by 0.7 per cent in 2015, compared to growth of more than 5 percent per year the previous decade.  A further reduction of 0.5 per cent is projected for 2016, though with large uncertainties.

The USA, the second biggest emitter of CO2 at 15 per cent, also reduced its coal use while increasing its oil and gas consumption and saw emissions decrease 2.6 per cent last year. USA emissions are projected to decrease by 1.7 per cent in 2016.

Read more at Low Growth in Global Carbon Emissions Continues for Third Successive Year

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