Man-made greenhouse gases declined in 2015

Man-made greenhouse gases declined in 2015

Experts warn that the trend is not expected to last, as India and other countries aim to increase coal and oil usage, over the next few decades.

A slight decline in man-made greenhouse gases occurred through the duration of 2015, scientists said Monday. Experts say the decline, though likely temporary, illustrates a halt in the increasing amount of pollutants, often cited as the cause of climate change.

The Washington Post reports that the gases declined around 0.6 percent since 2014. When confirmed, the decline will be the first of its kind in a time where the world economy was not in recession. Scientists attribute the decrease to more countries investing in renewable energy forms, like solar and wind power.

China’s decreased use of coal to make electricity is one of the largest factors contributing to the decline. Other countries emitted significantly smaller amounts of carbon dioxide from fossil fuel, as more individuals opt for fuel-efficient vehicles, according to a report Monday in Nature Climate Change.

Experts warn that the trend is not expected to last, as India and other countries aim to increase coal and oil usage, over the next few decades. However, those increases may be balanced by other regions focus renewable energies. A peak in greenhouse gas emissions could occur in the near future, analysts say.

Globally, carbon emissions have increased at a rate of 2.4 percent annually. U.N. and U.S. scientists both reported that the concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere were over 400 parts per billion in most of the Northern Hemisphere, earlier this year.  In 2014, however, the rate only increased around 0.6 percent, with early figures for 2015 showing a slight decrease, compared to the previous year.

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