People used to (and some lacklustre individuals still) argue that environmental regulations will wreak economic havoc, hopefully we’ll no longer listen to such irrational arguments. For decades environmentalist and knowledgable people have used data to prove that economies can grow while also protecting the environment. Turns out, the data was right.
The International Energy Agency has announced for the last two years carbon dioxide emissions remain unchanged even though the global economy has improved. There is still room for improvement around the world so it’s even possible to see a decrease in carbon dioxide output while having an increase in economic activity.
“The new figures confirm last year’s surprising but welcome news: we now have seen two straight years of greenhouse gas emissions decoupling from economic growth,” IEA executive director Fatih Birol said in a news release.
The change is because of the rapid adoption of renewable energy, especially for electrical generation, the IEA said.
Electricity generated by renewables accounted for around 90 per cent of new electricity generation in 2015, with wind alone producing more than half of new electricity generation.
The IEA’s conclusion that economic growth can continue without needing increased amounts of fossil fuels is preliminary, like its data, which will be explored in a more complete report in June.