“The new data provide further evidence that the door to a 2°C trajectory is about to close,” said IEA Chief Economist Fatih Birol.
The IEA report might only be preliminary. But hey!!!!! The figures published aren’t what most observers would have liked to have seen. They don’t portray even a slight decrease in CO2 levels. Just the opposite. During 2011 a record amount of the green house gas was released into the atmosphere. If you, your friends or your family ever wondered what the world’s governments are truly doing about the ominous specter that is runaway climate change, then these figures should clarify everything. Nothing. Read and weep.
Global carbon-dioxide (CO2) emissions from fossil-fuel combustion reached a record high of 31.6 gigatonnes (Gt) in 2011, according to preliminary estimates from the International Energy Agency (IEA). This represents an increase of 1.0 Gt on 2010, or 3.2%. Coal accounted for 45% of total energy-related CO2 emissions in 2011, followed by oil (35%) and natural gas (20%).
The 450 Scenario of the IEA’s World Energy Outlook 2011, which sets out an energy pathway consistent with a 50% chance of limiting the increase in the average global temperature to 2°C, requires CO2 emissions to peak at 32.6 Gt no later than 2017, i.e. just 1.0 Gt above 2011 levels. The 450 Scenario sees a decoupling of CO2 emissions from global GDP, but much still needs to be done to reach that goal as the rate of growth in CO2 emissions in 2011 exceeded that of global GDP. “The new data provide further evidence that the door to a 2°C trajectory is about to close,” said IEA Chief Economist Fatih Birol.
China made the largest contribution to the global increase, with its emissions rising by 720 million tones (Mt), or 9.3%, primarily due to higher coal consumption.
India’s emissions rose by 140 Mt, or 8.7%, moving it ahead of Russia to become the fourth largest emitter behind China, the United States, and the European Union.
Read the rest of the depressing figures at the IEA website.