Global carbon emissions are expected to fall 6% this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) says.
WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas said it’s “short-term” good news for the environment, but won’t be enough to get the world back on track to meet the 2015 Paris Agreement targets.
“This crisis has had an impact on the emissions of greenhouse gases,” Taalas said during a virtual press briefing. “We estimate that there is going to be a 6% drop in carbon emissions this year because of the lack of emissions from transportation and industry and energy production.”
The WMO says while the coronavirus pandemic may result in a temporary reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, it is not a substitute for sustained climate action.
“Whilst Covid-19 has caused a severe international health and economic crisis, failure to tackle climate change may threaten human well-being, ecosystems and economies for centuries,” Taalas added. “We need to flatten both the pandemic and climate change curves.”