From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : GCP
Mains level : Impact of slow economic growth on emission
- The Global Carbon Project, which puts out emission estimates for across the world every year, has said India’s emissions in 2019 was likely to be only 1.8 per cent higher than in 2018.
- This is significantly lower than the 8% growth that India showed last year and the more-than-5% average growth over the last ten years.
Global Carbon Project (GCP)
- The GCP is a Global Research Project of Future Earth and a research partner of the World Climate Research Programme.
- Established in 2001, its projects include global budgets for three dominant greenhouse gases — CO2, methane, and nitrous oxide — and complementary efforts in urban, regional, cumulative, and negative emissions.
- The main object of the group has been to fully understand the carbon cycle.
- It collaborates with many groups to gather, analyze, and publish data on greenhouse gas emissions in an open and transparent fashion, making datasets available on its website and through its publications.
- It releases the Global Carbon Atlas (established in 2013) a tool for visualizing data related to the global carbon cycle.
What arrested the growth
- The economic slowdown has been blamed for a lower emission growth in the rest of the world as well, and also in China, the world’s largest emitter.
- Weak economic growth in India has led to slower growth in oil and natural gas use.
- With a weakening economy, growth in India’s generation of electricity has slowed from 6 per cent per year to under 1 per cent in 2019, despite electrification of villages adding to potential demand.
- Moreover, the addition of a very wet monsoon led to very high hydropower generation and a decline in generation from coal.
Why the report matters
- The numbers put out by Global Carbon Project are estimates, and not official.
- But these offer important indicators to global trends in carbon dioxide emissions in near-real time.
- In India’s case, the most recent official numbers relating to all kinds of emissions pertain to 2014. Those were submitted to the UN climate body in 2018.
- According to those numbers, India’s CO2 emissions in 2014 was 1.99 billion tonnes, while its total greenhouse gas emissions, which include other greenhouse gases like methane and nitrous oxide, was 2.6 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.
- The GCP 2019 estimates the carbon dioxide emissions in 2019 alone to be about 2.6 billion tonnes. They do not give the estimates of emissions of other greenhouse gases.