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Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduced 17% Worldwide in April, Study Says

A recently published study predicts a 4 to 7 percent decline in greenhouse gas emissions for 2020 compared to 2019.
May 20, 2020, 8am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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"The wave of lockdowns and shuttered economies caused by the coronavirus pandemic fueled a momentous decline in global greenhouse gas emissions, although one unlikely to last," reports Chris Mooney, Brady Dennis, and John Muyskens.

Those conclusions are sourced from a study published on May 19 in the journal Nature Climate Change. According to the study, the peak decline in greenhouse gas emissions reached 17 percent in mid-April, although some nations achieved a much larger reduction. 

The study "projects that total emissions for 2020 will likely fall between 4 and 7 percent compared to the prior year — an unheard-of drop in normal times, but considerably less dramatic than the decline during the first few months of the year when economies screeched to a halt," according to the article. 

The prediction of a 4 to 7 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is in line with a target shared by Planetizen earlier this month: that the worldwide reduction in transportation as a result of stay-at-home orders and social distancing would result in a five percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions—perhaps smaller a figure than many might expect, and far less of a temporary change than necessary to prevent the worst effects of climate change in the long-term.


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Published on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 in The Washington Post
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