Carbon emissions to reach new highs this year

With a target of cutting emissions by about 202 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent by 2030 through blending petrol with ethanol a sugarcane-derived fuel Zimbabwe has made some progress

Warning of a "giant leap backwards for humankind", the Global Carbon Project said in a report (pdf) released Monday that carbon emissions are expected to hit a record high in 2017, following three years of stable CO2 levels.

The Global Carbon Project and University of East Anglia (UEA) revealed carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions could grow by two percent in 2017.

"With global carbon dioxide emissions from all human activities estimated at 41 billion tons for 2017, time is running out on our ability to keep warming well below 2 degrees Celsius let alone 1.5 degrees Celsius", said Le Quéré.

The GCP is a collaboration between worldwide science organisations to monitor global carbon emissions and their sources in order to help "slow the rate of increase of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere". An increase in burning coal in China, in particular, is likely responsible for much of the projected increase in carbon emissions.

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".

Data from the Department of Environment and Energy shows Australia's emissions have been increasing since 2013. "This is very disappointing", said Corinne Le Quéré, director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research at the UK's University of East Anglia and who led the new research.

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


Demonstrators dressed as Donald Trump and as a polar bear are seen during a demonstration in Bonn against the COP 23 UN Climate Change Conference hosted by Fiji but held in Bonn, Germany November 11, 2017.

¨"The plateau of previous year was not peak emissions after all", the Global Carbon Project, a group of 76 scientists in 15 countries, wrote of the findings.

India's emissions are expected to grow at a relatively lesser pace than in the previous decade.

"The slowdown in emissions growth from 2014 to 2016 was always a delicate balance, and the likely 2 percent increase in 2017 clearly demonstrates that we can't take the recent slowdown for granted", Robbie Andrew, a co-author of the study and a senior researcher at Norway's CICERO Center for International Climate Research, 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 2ºC let alone 1.5ºC".

It estimates that 37 billion tonnes of Carbon dioxide will be emitted from burning fossil fuels, the highest total so far. In June he withdrew the United States from the 2015 Paris climate agreement, under which every other nation in the world has now agreed to limit climate change-causing pollution. Technologies-including wind and solar power-have surged about 14 percent each year in the last five years, though the starting point was low.

"Policy makers in Bonn are preparing for the Global Stocktake under the Paris Agreement, that will start in 2018 and occur every five years, and this puts vast pressure on the scientific community to develop methods and perform measurements that can truly verify changes in emissions within this five-yearly cycle", Prof Le Quere added.

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