Thursday, November 19, 2009

"Fossil-fuel emissions... tracking worst trends"

From Agence France-Presse:

Carbon emissions from fossil fuels rose two percent last year to an all-time high, leaving Earth on a worst-scenario track for global warming, scientists reported on Tuesday.

They also voiced concern for the world's oceans and forests, saying the capacity of these fabled "sinks" to soak up dangerous greenhouse gases was fading.

And they placed the spotlight on surging emissions by China and developing countries, explaining that a huge chunk of this carbon comes from exporting goods that are consumed in rich nations.

The paper, published by the peer-reviewed journal Nature Geoscience, comes in the runup to December 7-18 UN talks in Copenhagen aimed at crafting a pact to combat climate change from 2013.

Global emissions from fossil fuels in 2008 amounted to 8.7 billion tonnes of carbon, an increase of two percent over 2007, the Global Carbon Project (GCP), gathering more than 30 climate specialists, reported.

The 2008 tally amounts to a decline over the average annual increase of 3.6 percent since the start of the decade, and can be pinned to the start of the world financial crisis, which triggered a fall in economic activity, it said.

Emissions last year were 29 percent higher than in 2000, reflecting a sprint in economic growth this decade, and a massive 41 percent greater than in 1990, the reference year for the UN's Kyoto Protocol.

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