Global carbon emissions to rise 2% in 2017: scientists

Increasing coal use as here in China is one factor driving emissions upwards

Following three straight years in which Carbon dioxide emissions remained stagnant, this is a significant jump.

Most of the increase in 2017 was reported to have come from China which emitted 3.5 per cent more than the previous year. The study was published Monday and is being presented in Bonn, Germany, during climate talks where leaders are trying to come up with rules for the 2015 Paris deal.

They say the growth in 2017 is mainly due to stronger emissions growth in China and other developing countries, and their findings show that the Paris goals could quickly slip out of reach.

Land-use change emissions in 2017, on other hand, would be very similar to that in 2016, the scientists wrote in Nature Climate Change journal.

"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. India's rise in emissions was modest compared to previous years at 2 per cent, while the USA and European Union were both on track for small falls.

"This is very disappointing", said lead researcher Prof.

"It is far too early to proclaim that we have turned a corner and started the journey towards zero emissions". India, the No. 3 carbon polluting nation, went up 2 percent.

Urban areas account for around two-thirds of the world's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from global energy use. It is again a key driver in 2017.

"Local and regional governments are making commitments that will help national Governments close the gap between current national commitments and the emissions reductions needed to achieve the Paris Agreement targets", said Gino Van Begin, Secretary General of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability, a global network of more than 1,500 cities, towns and regions working together for sustainable development.

Jackson said the team - which produces these reports every year in November - has confidence in its 2017 report because it is based on real data from top polluting nations through the summer and in some cases through October. Oil use increased and a rise in natural gas prices slightly increased coal use.

The years between 2014 and 2016 stand out because emissions barely budged despite a growth in global gross domestic product. Declines in the United States (0.4 percent) and Europe (0.2 percent) was smaller than previous years.

The rise, after years of flat growth, has sparked fears the world could be moving backwards in the fight against climate change just at the period when emissions need to start coming down sharply.

While carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel and industry in China are expected to rise about 3.5 per cent, after about two years of economic slowdown, India's contribution to the atmospheric build-up would go up by almost 2 per cent, the researchers have found. It estimates that 37 billion tonnes of Carbon dioxide will be emitted from burning fossil fuels, the highest total so far. Corinne Le Quéré, director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research at the University of East Anglia.

It could take as long as 10 years for scientists to confidently verify a sustained change in emissions using measurements of atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide.

Commenting on the sad state of global climate and hoping for a better future, Le Quere said, "This year we have seen how climate change can amplify the impacts of hurricanes with more intense rainfall, higher sea levels and warmer ocean conditions favouring more powerful storms".

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