The Latest: Carbon dioxide emissions see steep jump in 2018
KATOWICE, Poland (AP) — The Latest on the two-week U.N. climate meeting in Poland (all times local):
Scientists say after several years of little growth, global emissions of heat-trapping carbon dioxide have experienced their largest jump in seven years.
World carbon dioxide emissions are estimated to have risen 2.7 percent from 2017 to 2018. That’s according to three studies released Wednesday from the Global Carbon Project, an international scientific collaboration that tracks greenhouse gas emissions.
Scientists say the calculations, announced during negotiations to put the 2015 Paris climate accord into effect, puts some of the landmark agreement’s goals nearly out of reach.
Andrew Jones of Climate Interactive, which models greenhouse gas emissions and temperatures but was not part of the research, says “this is terrible news.”
Environmental activists are naming Saudi Arabia and Brazil as “fossils of the day” at this year’s U.N. climate conference.
The Climate Action Network awarded them the dubious honor Wednesday, citing Saudi delegates’ efforts to oppose ambitious efforts to curb global warming.
The group said the Brazil would share the booby prize because of its incoming president’s refusal to host the next round of talks. It also cited Jair Bolsonaro’s threat to allow deforestation of the Amazon rainforest, a key sponge for global greenhouses gas emissions.
Host Poland received the first “fossil of the day” award at this year’s talks in Katowice on Tuesday. CAN accused the government of undermining the European Union position by promoting its coal industry.
Brazil’s chief negotiator at the U.N. climate meeting is warning against sidelining developing countries during key talks on efforts tackle global warming.
J. Antonio Marcondes said Wednesday that including all negotiators during the drafting process could help prevent a repeat of the Copenhagen talks of 2009, which ended in acrimony.
The two-week meeting in Poland is intended to finalize details of the 2015 Paris accord on keeping average global temperature increases well below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit).
There are numerous unresolved sticking points in the draft text published overnight, including on transparency and financial support for poor countries.
Marcondes said “what must be avoided at all costs is developing countries being sidelined or presented with take-it-or-leave-it texts.”
Environmental activists are questioning the presence of coal, oil and gasoline companies at this year’s U.N. climate talks.
Pascoe Sabido of the Brussels-based Corporate Europe Observatory claimed Wednesday that firms responsible for significant greenhouse gas emissions are getting access to negotiations and holding high-profile events during the U.N. climate talks in Poland.
Sabido accused companies such as Polish coal and gas firm Tauron, which is offering free rides around Katowice in electric cars, of using the event to “greenwash” their activities.
Activists noted the ties between energy companies and national or state governments at the conference lobbying on their behalf.
Sabido suggested there should be a “firewall” between corporations and delegates similar to the one that the World Health Organization established to prevent tobacco firms from influencing anti-smoking negotiations.
The United Nations says curbing climate change will have huge benefits for people’s health worldwide.
The World Health Organization said Wednesday that meeting the 2015 Paris accord’s goals would significantly cut global air pollution, saving a million lives each year by 2050.
Fuels that produce air pollution, such as coal, gasoline and wood, are also a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.
In a report released at the U.N. climate summit in Poland, WHO said the savings on health expenditure will far outweigh the cost of tackling global warming.
WHO said climate change will also affect drinking water supplies, the level of nutrients in staple foods such as rice, and the likelihood of natural disasters, while measures to curb it, like promoting cycling over driving, have proven health benefits.
This item has been corrected to show that wood is a fuel that produces air pollution, not a fossil fuel.