Global carbon emissions grow to highest-ever rate

Carbon emissions emitted into the Earth’s atmosphere grew by 1.4 percent in 2017, reaching a historic high of 32.5 gigatonnes.

 This is the headline figure from a new reportfrom the International Energy Agency (IEA), which also found that global energy demand grew by 2.1 percent over the past year. Energy usage has been bolstered by renewed consumption in China and India, which made up 40 percent of the overall increase.

72 percent of this new demand was met by fossil fuels while renewables managed to meet one quarter.

The increase in carbon emissions is a resumption of growth after three years of global emissions remaining stationary, and the first since the landmark Paris climate agreement was signed. However, some notable exceptions came from major nations; declines were found in the United States, United Kingdom, Mexico and Japan.

The IEA noted that the United States saw a decline of 0.5 percent, the third year in a row that emissions have dropped, largely attributable to the decline of coal-fired power plants and the increase in renewables. Emissions in the UK dropped by 3.8 percent.

“The robust global economy pushed up energy demand last year, which was mostly met by fossil fuels, while renewables made impressive strides,” said Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director. “The significant growth in global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions in 2017 tells us that current efforts to combat climate change are far from sufficient. For example, there has been a dramatic slowdown in the rate of improvement in global energy efficiency as policy makers have put less focus in this area”.

The news should provide a wake-up call to the international community as calls to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy are more pressing than ever. Research published in the past week alone has shown that ditching fossil fuels sooner rather than later could save over 150 million lives.

In addition, the World Bank has warned that reducing carbon emissions now could prevent millions of people from becoming ‘climate migrants’ in order to make a living.

Source: IEA

News published on Climate Action Programme
Consult the source

Moderated by : Nadège Rigaudeau

Other news in "Information"

Financial viability of NZEBs through AdoRes : Abracadabra financial tools and lessons learnt to support the building energy revolution

Published 18 Jan 2019 - 10:53

ABRACADABRA team is glad to invite you to the webinar “Financial viability of NZEBs through AdoRES: ABRACADABRA financial tools and lessons learnt to support the building energy revolution” .31 January 2019 at 10:00-11:30 CET. The (...)

EU group invites feedback on sustainable finance definition

Published 17 Jan 2019 - 15:33

The Technical Expert Group on Sustainable Finance (TEG) set up by the European Commission has requested feedback on the development of an EU-wide classification system for environmentally sustainable economic activities. A unified (...)

The financing of renovation in the social housing sector

Published 16 Jan 2019 - 14:12

If one wants to have a short look back at how the European policymakers have dealt with the topic of renovation of housing over the last few years, 2010 would probably be a turning point. That year, on the one hand, the Global Financ (...)


Search through the news

Enter your own key word

Other news


Most read articles