Carbon Emissions to Increase Four-Fold in 2017
From 2014-2016 the amount of carbon dioxide we put into the air only increased by one-quarter percent. It looked like the goal of keeping the Earth’s warming to 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit annually might be met.
By the end of this year, a record 37 billion metric tons of pollution, (an increase of 2%)generated by manufacturing and fossil fuels will enter the atmosphere. This is a four-fold increase over the percentage of pollutants released during the three years mentioned previously.
What is causing of this step backward?
Deforestation-Trees are natures air filters. An additional four billion tons of CO2 will be generated because of deforestation this year. This will increase carbon emissions from 37 to 41 metric tons.
Economics-There is a causal link between economic growth and increased pollution. A spike in the cost of natural gas triggered an increase in coal and oil use in the US.
Weather-A drought in China this summer impaired the operation of hydroelectric plants. Consequently, more electricity had to be generated using coal.
Modernization-Though many in rural areas are still without electricity India’s electrical grid has been expanding rapidly. This necessitates burning more coal to meet the increased demand for electricity.
Despite the recent increase in carbon emissions scientist remain optimistic that we will never see the 3% increase in pollution that has been the norm for most of this century. That is if we don’t fall back into old environmental habits.