Focus on solar keeps CO2 in check

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Global energyrelated carbon dioxide emissions remained flat for a third straight year in 2016 on the back of increasing dependence on natural gas, renewable power, new nuclear capacity and greater focus on efficiency, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its latest report on Friday .

Energy-related carbon emission remained flat even as the global economy grew, signalling continued decoupling of emissions and economic activity. Asked for specific number on India, an IEA spokesperson responded by saying individual country-wise data was not yet ready for release.

While global carbon emission remained nearly stagnant in 2015, India’s emission had shown an increase of 5.2% in 2015. But industry ob servers said the figure could be stagnant or indicate a tapering growth in 2016 because of several measures taken by the Narendra Modi government in the last three years. They include, thrust on creating a gas-based economy , ramping up of solar power capacity , replacing all traditional bulbs with LED, deploying technology to improve emission from old power plants and improving fuel and automobile quality .

But the biggest fillip to wards reducing India’s energy-related carbon footprint is expected from the Modi government’s thrust on building solar power projects, which now have aggregate capacity of 10GW.

The Modi government also revived gas-fired power stations last year. In 2016, global emissions from the energy sector stood at 32.1 gigatonnes (GT), the same as the previous two years, while the global economy grew 3.1%, according to IEA estimates.

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