Overall increase in emissions of greenhouse gases in 2013
Global emissions of greenhouse gases rose by 2.3 percent in 2013, reaching a record high, highlighting that the world is still far from being able to control global warming.
However, the average growth rate in the last decade was 2.5 percent. Much of this small decline can be attributed to the economic slowdown in China, which is the single largest source of emissions in the world. I mean, we do not know if the galloping pace of recent years rearguard when the economy starts to grow again. As a counterpoint, in the United States have increased emissions by 2.9 percent after declining in recent years gained.
These very negative data comes from a follow-up initiative called Global Carbon Project and have been published in the journal Nature Geoscience. Experts have pointed out that the figures show that more efforts are needed to achieve the long-term global warming was within tolerable limits.
According to Glen P. Peters, a scientist at the International Center for Research on Climate and the Environment in Oslo, who helped compile the new data on emissions of greenhouse gases, there is no time to discuss which countries should get down to work first and what countries will do later. We need to get everyone to work together.
More than 100 world leaders will gather Tuesday at the Climate Summit UN to discuss how to reverse the trend in emissions. However, expectations for the summit meeting next Tuesday are low, and there is no evidence of any political breakthrough that would lead us to more ambitious efforts.
Emissions have been steadily declining in recent years in most developed countries, in part due to economic weakness, and also thanks the strengthening of climate policies. Emissions of 28 EU nations fell 1.8 percent in 2013, despite the increase in coal consumption in a few countries, including Germany and Poland. Emissions dropped sharply in Britain, Italy and Spain.
Emissions in the United States had declined due to increased natural gas, which emits less carbon dioxide per unit of energy than coal emits. But in 2013 the coal regained some market share. If that trend continues, it could become difficult for the Obama administration in its attempt to establish stricter policies on greenhouse gas challenge.
According to the Earth Institute at Columbia University, cement production is responsible for about 5% of global carbon dioxide emissions.
China’s emissions grew 4.2 percent and India 5.1 percent. Both countries have been building power plants that burn coal at a dizzying pace. And although China is investing in renewable and nuclear energy, has become by far the largest emitter of greenhouse gases. Emissions 10,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year are almost double those of the United States, although emissions per person are still much higher in the United States.
The increase of these and other gases from human activity has caused the planet to warm about 1.5° C since pre-industrial era, what is causing land ice melts around the world. Heat waves and torrential rains intensify. Meanwhile, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the UN noted that if no preventive measures are taken, the world will face later this century temperature increases of four degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. So, if aggressive action is taken, climate change might conflict with human civilization as we know it.
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