Carbon Dioxide Pollution Reaches Record High Despite Lockdown

by Arun

The UN’s World Meteorological Organization has released a report detailing that climate-heating gases have reached record highs despite the lockdowns instituted due to the widespread COVID-19 pandemic.

According to The Guardian, there is estimated to be between a 4.2% and 7.5% cut in emissions in 2020 as a result of the global lockdowns which have significantly impacted the industrial and travel industries but has also negated the need for standard commute. With all the facts pointed out, however, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) states that although these numbers have been a small dip in greenhouse gas emissions, it should not detract from the fact that there has been a continuous buildup of greenhouse gases caused by unnatural, human-influenced activities.

In 2019, the WMO reports that the increase in carbon dioxide level in 2019 has risen by more than the average increase over the last decades. Furthermore, scientists agree that in order to limit global heating to about 1.5C, global emissions must fall by 50% by 2030, a steep drop that warrants serious action. 

The Greenhouse Gas Bulletin shows that carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is 50% higher than it was in 1750, which sparked the start of the industrial revolution, causing an increase in urbanization and a rise in factories. During the industrial revolution, pollution in the cities was described as being unbearable and filling the air as a result of the spike in modernization.

To accomplish the ambitious goals set forth by the WMO, Petteri Taalas, Secretary of the WMO, states that a “complete transformation of our industrial, energy and transport systems” would be needed. Global leaders have resonated with this idea, setting forth ambitious goals of achieving carbon neutrality within the next few decades in addition to banning many gas-emitting processes, including gasoline cars. These changes have given rise to companies across the globe that focus on the future of renewable energy, like Tesla.

As global carbon dioxide emissions continuously increase, it brings forth the need for the world to bound together to address the issue. As a result of individuals and companies alike working together to mitigate climate change, the future of a green planet seems to be bright.