China’s emissions fall by 25% in two weeks. The efforts to contain the Coronavirus Covid-19 have led to a sharp drop in the burning of fossil fuels in the country, meaning we are seeing an accidental but unprecedented climate experiment.
Most of this post has been lifted complete from theMarch 2020 Sustainable Wantage News letter, which you can find at http://bit.ly/2PFqQON. I do not usually do this, but this news is so unexpected. If this can happen i 2 weeks, maybe we will achieve much better than the Paris targets.
Chinese carbon dioxide emissions hit a record high in 2018, according to the Independent newspaper on 21st Feb 2020, but Joeri Rogelj, of Imperial College London, said these downward changes in 2019 would make no difference in the long term. “This change in CO2 is not permanent,” he said. “In the grand scheme of things it won’t be visible in our total emissions.
“If there’s a silver lining to the virus, it’s that it’s a wake-up call in our society and intricate structures. We’re far from controlling our world as well as we think.”
Nasa images show the dramatic decline of nitrogen dioxide pollution. Globally, one in five flights have been cancelled in an attempt to reduce the spread of the disease and global emissions have dropped by 6%. Although likely temporary, it shows how rapidly emissions can fall when an emergency is recognised. The situation has developed considerably since this estimate.
The court of appeal ruled this week that a third runway at Heathrow would be illegal, because it is not consistent with the Paris agreement nor with the government’s emissions target.
The ruling could also be relevant to major new road projects, since current road building guidelines pre-date and do not take into account the commitment to net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Bristol also rejected a plan to expand its airport, due to the city’s commitment to reaching zero carbon emissions by 2030