Global carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels and industry have stabilised for a third year in a row, in a shift that will reduce the risks of dangerous climate change if the trend continues, researchers say.
CO2 emissions from the two sources last year were steady at about 36.4 gigatonnes, slowing from a pace that had reached as much as 3 per cent a year during the past decade, according to the Global Carbon Project.
“It’s really remarkable,” said Pep Canadell, executive director of the Global Carbon Project at the CSIRO. “We’re moving from an era of super-fast growth in emissions that we saw in the 2000s.”
The recent plateau in fossil fuel-related emissions, though, wasn’t enough to prevent an acceleration of atmospheric levels of CO2 last year. And while the pause is welcomed, its longevity may be shortlived as pollution from nations such as India increases.