CO2 Skyrockets Despite Economy

'Fried Earth,' <a href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:Hansdoller&action=edit&redlink=1">Hans G. Doller</a>, via <a href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Fried_Earth.jpg">Wikimedia Commons</a>.


Nature Climate Change published a new science paper yesterday showing that the 2008-2009 economic crisis barely dented the global rise in greenhouse gas emissions.

Unlike other recessions, where emissions dipped for years, the last one offered only a year of respite from accelerating emissions, and only a paltry 1.4 percent in total.

By 2010, CO2 emissions skyrocketed 6 percent higher, for a world record 10 billion tons, with 2011 following suit.

Looks like all sides of the political bickering are to blame. From the paper:

Global carbon dioxide emissions from fossil-fuel combustion and cement production grew 5.9% in 2010, surpassed 9 Pg of carbon for the first time, and more than offset the 1.4% decrease in 2009. The impact of the 2008–2009 global financial crisis on emissions has been short-lived owing to strong emissions growth in emerging economies, a return to emissions growth in developed economies, and an increase in the fossil-fuel intensity of the world economy.

This level of emissions now puts the world firmly on course for the ‘worst case’ global-warming scenario, where worldwide temperatures would rise between 7.2°F and 10.8°F (4°C and 6°C) by 2100. 

$500,000 MATCHING GIFT

In 2014, before Donald Trump announced his run for president, we knew we had to do something different to address the fundamental challenge facing journalism: how hard-hitting reporting that can hold the powerful accountable can survive as the bottom falls out of the news business.

Being a nonprofit, we started planning The Moment for Mother Jones: A special campaign to raise $25 million for key investments to make Mother Jones the strongest watchdog it can be. Five years later, readers have stepped up and contributed an astonishing $23 million in gifts and future pledges. This is an incredible statement from the Mother Jones community in the face of the huge threats—both economic and political—against the free press.

Read more about The Moment and see what we've been able to accomplish thanks to readers' incredible generosity so far, and please join them today. Your gift will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $500,000 total, during this critical moment for journalism.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.