In order to avert catastrophic climate change we need to dramatically cut global carbon output. That’s what the Paris Agreement is all about and it comes in to force in just three more days. The really good news is not just that we have decreased carbon output it’s also that the Paris Agreement is going to accelerate the decline. Things are looking good in the carbon reduction portfolio!
The biggest driver was a decline in China’s coal consumption, which resulted a 6.4% drop the carbon intensity of the world’s second biggest economy.
A centrally-led shift of the economy to a service-based industry has begun to shut down the vast coal-fuelled steel and cement sectors. For the first time, China led the rankings table for the biggest drop in intensity.
The UK and US were also significant contributors, reducing by 6% and 4.7% respectively, to the overall drop as both governments introduced policies that pushed coal plants out of business. In the UK coal use dropped by 20% for the second year running.
Richard Black, director of the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU), said: “In the week in which the Paris Agreement comes into force, this is very promising news in showing that the dominant paradigm of economic growth is swiftly changing, which makes the Paris targets look more achievable.