Our key takeaway: Global CO2 emissions are at an all time high in 2022 - breaking records and not in a good way. The International Energy Agency (IEA) states that climate change and geopolitical challenges we saw fuelled this worrying increase, at a time when we should be drastically cutting emissions. A few stats. Global energy-related CO2 emissions grew by 0.9% or 321 Mt in 2022, reaching a new high of over 36.8 Gt since 1900. Of the 321 Mt CO2 increase, 60 Mt CO2 can be attributed to cooling and heating demand in extreme weather and another 55 Mt CO2 to nuclear power plants being offline. Emissions from oil grew, with around half of the increase coming from aviation (as air travel continued to rebound from pandemic lows, nearing 80% of 2019 levels). Some good news though. Increased deployment of clean energy technologies such as renewables, electric vehicles, and heat pumps helped prevent an additional 550 Mt in CO2 emissions. And we are back to a decade-long trend of decoupling emissions and economic growth (CO2 growth in 2022 was well below global GDP growth of 3.2%) - a trend that was broken by 2021’s sharp rebound in emissions. For companies: keep your eye on the ball of rapid and deep science-based emission cuts - in a rights-respecting way.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) published CO2 Emissions in 2022 (March 2023):