New global analysis shows 400 percent increase in carbon dioxide emissions growth

November 10, 2006

The global growth in carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels was 4 times greater in the period between 2000 to 2005 than in the preceding 10 years, say scientists gathering in Beijing today for an international conference on global environmental change.

Despite efforts to reduce carbon emissions, the global growth rate in CO2 was 3.2% in the five years to 2005 compared to 0.8% in the period 1990 to 1999, according to data soon to be published by the Global Carbon Project (www.globalcarbonproject.org), a component of the Earth System Science Partnership.

“This is a very worrying sign,” said Dr Mike Raupach, Chair of the Global Carbon Project. “It indicates that recent efforts to reduce emissions have virtually no impact on emissions growth and that effective caps are urgently needed.”

Carbon dioxide emissions over the last five years are close to one of emissions scenarios from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) called “A1B”. This scenario assumes that 50% of energy over the next century will come from fossil fuels, and leads to unacceptably high atmospheric CO2 concentrations.

“On our current path, we will find it extremely difficult to rein in carbon emissions enough to stabilise the atmospheric CO2 concentration at 450 ppm and even 550 ppm will be a challenge,” said Dr Josep Canadell, Executive Director of the Global Carbon Project. “At some point in the near future, we will miss the boat in terms of achieving acceptable levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.”

Due to the phenomenon of environmental inertia, even when anthropogenic emissions do begin to decrease, atmospheric CO2 will continue to rise for up to as much as a century. Global temperatures will continue to increase for two or more centuries locking the world into continuing climate change for this period. Effective management of Earth system inertia depends on early and consistent actions.

The analysis was commissioned by UNESCO and will be presented at the COP12 climate talks in Nairobi this week.

Source: Alfred Wegener Institut fuer Polar und Meeresforschung

Explore further: Porous material converts CO2 into carbon monoxide and oxygen

Related Stories

Porous material converts CO2 into carbon monoxide and oxygen

August 21, 2015

(Phys.org)—A team of researchers with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California has developed a porous material that is able to split carbon dioxide molecules into carbon monoxide and oxygen. ...

Boreal forests challenged by global change

August 20, 2015

Management of boreal forests needs greater attention from international policy, argued forestry experts from the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Natural Resources Canada, and the University of ...

Australia pledges 26% emissions cut by 2030

August 11, 2015

Australia plans to reduce carbon emissions by at least 26 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced Tuesday, but environmentalists said the target fell well short of what was needed to tackle ...

Recommended for you

Explaining crocodiles in Wyoming

September 2, 2015

Fifty million years ago, the Cowboy State was crawling with crocodiles. Fossil records show that crocs lounged in the shade of palm trees from southwestern Wyoming to southern Canada during the Cretaceous and Eocene.  Exactly ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

dachpyarvile
5 / 5 (1) Jun 17, 2009
Yes, CO2 is on the rise...but temperatures around the world are falling. England had their harshest winter in 13 years. Last year, China had their worst in 50-100 years, depending on who you talk to at the time. Argentina had snow, Iraq had snow in amounts not seen for over 25 or more years. Malibu, CA (an oceanfront city) had snow.

And now, where I live in the high deserts have been having daytime temperatures in the 70s in the middle of June when the temperatures were in the high 80s last year, the high 90s the year before that, and in the 100s the year before that!

Go figure. :)

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.