Global CO2 emissions forecast to rise

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While carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel and industry in China are expected to rise about 3.5 per cent, after about two years of economic slowdown, India's contribution to the atmospheric build-up would go up by almost 2 per cent, the researchers have found.

UEA's Tyndall Center for Climate Change Research director Corinne Le Quéré said in a statement, "With global Carbon dioxide emissions from human activities estimated at 41 billion tonnes for 2017, time is running out on our ability to keep warming well below two degrees Celsius, let alone 1.5 degrees Celsius".

Richard Black, director of the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit think-tank who was not involved in the study, said carbon emissions per unit of GDP were falling.

In 2017, Carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels and industry are projected to grow by 2% (0.8% to 3%).

"Global CO2 emissions appear to be going up strongly once again after a three-year stable period".

Dr Stephen Cornelius, WWF's chief adviser on Climate Change, added: "This increase is deeply worrying for our planet after three years of no growth".

The researchers said there are uncertainties in our ability to estimate emissions changes - Glen Peters of the CICERO Center for International Climate Research and lead author on a study said it could take up to 10 years to independently verify a change in emissions based on measurements of Carbon dioxide atmospheric concentrations.

Australia has committed to reducing emissions to 26-28 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030.

China, the world's largest greenhouse gas emitter, drove the unexpected and rapid growth of emissions in the 2000's and was behind the unexpected recent slowdown.

Much will depend on the fast implementation of the global climate deal sealed in Paris in 2015 and this is the focus of the United Nations summit of the world's countries in Bonn, Germany this week.

Although Professor Jotzo said there is a chance that Australia's 2017 emissions may show a slight decline due to the closing of the Hazelwood power station, this will likely be offset by a higher sales of petrol during the same period.

The US is expected to see a slower decline in its carbon emissions, from an annual 1.2% drop over the past 10 years to a decrease of 0.4% this year, with a return to growth in coal use, as president Donald Trump promised to rescue the coal industry.

"With global Carbon dioxide emissions from human activities estimated at 41 billion tonnes for 2017, time is running out on our ability to keep warming well below 2ºC, let alone 1.5ºC, she said". Meanwhile emissions from fossil fuels are set to reach 37 Gt CO2 - a record high. European emissions are expected to decline by.2 percent, which is also lower than the average decline of 2.2 percent per year.

Chinese emissions went down about 1% in 2015 and were flat in 2016, but are projected to increase between 0.7% and 5.4% in 2017, with a best estimate using preliminary data of 3.5% in 2017.

Land-use change emissions in 2017, on other hand, would be very similar to that in 2016, the scientists wrote in Nature Climate Change journal.

All of this might be an unwelcome message for policy makers and delegates at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP 23) in Bonn this week.

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