The International Energy Agency (IEA) announced today that greenhouse gas emissions rose 1.4% in 2017, marking the first rise in three years.
As the IEA points out, emissions have reached a historic high of 32.5 gigatonnes (Gt), a resumption of growth after three years of global emissions remaining flat. The increase in CO2emissions, however, was not universal. While most major economies saw a rise, some others experienced declines, including the United States, United Kingdom, Mexico and Japan. The biggest decline came from the United States, mainly because of higher deployment of renewables.
The report states, improvements in global energy efficiency slowed down in 2017. The rate of decline in global energy intensity, defined as the energy consumed per unit of economic output, slowed to only 1.6% in 2017, much lower than the 2.0% improvement seen in 2016.
The growth in global energy demand was concentrated in Asia, with China and India together representing more than 40% of the increase. Energy demand in all advanced economies contributed more than 20% of global energy demand growth, although their share in total energy use continued to fall. Notable growth was also registered in Southeast Asia (which accounted for 8% of global energy demand growth) and Africa (6%), although per capita energy use in these regions still remains well below the global average.
In November 2017, the US Energy Information Administration projected that growth in global carbon dioxide emissions from energy-related sources will slow to 0.6% per year through 2040 despite increased energy consumption, according to the EIA’s International Energy Outlook 2017.
That rate is slower than the 1.8% annual growth in emissions from 1990 to 2015, the EIA’s Perry Lindstrom says in a Today in Energy post. “Emissions from countries outside the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) account for all of EIA’s projected growth in energy-related CO2 emissions,” Lindstrom writes
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