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India's CO2 emissions projected to grow 6.3% in 2018, highest in the world: Study

By Rajiv Shah
An international interdisciplinary journal, “Earth System Science Data (ESSD)”, has raised the alarm that global fossil CO2 emissions in India grew at a rate of +5.2% per year on an average during the last one decade (2008-17), and are expected to grow even higher in 2018. Suggesting that this growth is higher than China’s CO2 emissions, an increase of +3.0%, an article in the journal says, while the global average for the decade was 1.5 % per year, the emissions decreased in the European Union (EU) countries by −1.8%.
Published by Copernicus Gesellschaft mbH, based in Göttingen, Germany, the research study by more than 50 scholars from across the world, led by Corinne Le Quéré, titled “Global Carbon Budget 2018”, however, says that even today India’s overall CO2 emissions contributed 7% to the global CO2 emissions in 2017, which was just below that of China (27 %), US (15 %), the EU (10%), with the rest of the world contributing 42%. 
According to the study, if the CO2 emission growth rate for India from 2016 to 2017 were +3.9 %, more than anywhere in the world – it was +1.5% for China, −0.5 % for US, +1.2 % for European Union countries and +1.9% for the rest of the world – projection for 2018 suggested that for India ther would be an increase of +6.3 % over 2017. “This is based on separate projections for coal (+7.1 %), oil (+2.9 %), gas (+6.0 %), and cement (+13.4 %)”, the study states. 
For calculating India’s CO2 emissions, the researchers use data from four different sources:
  1. monthly coal production and sales data from the Ministry of Mines (2018), Coal India Limited (CIL, 2018), and Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL, 2018), combined with import data from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MCI, 2018) and power station stocks data from the Central Electricity Authority (CEA, 2018); 
  2. monthly oil production and consumption data from the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (2018); 
  3. monthly natural gas production and import data from the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (2018); and 
  4. monthly cement production data from the Office of the Economic Advisor (OEA, 2018). 
Says the study, “All data were available for January to September or October. We use Holt–Winters exponential smoothing with multiplicative seasonality (Chatfield, 1978) on each of these four emission series to project to the end of the current year.”
It adds, “This iterative method produces estimates of both trend and seasonality at the end of the observation period that are a function of all prior observations, weighted most strongly to more recent data, while maintaining some smoothing effect. The main source of uncertainty in the projection of India's emissions is the assumption of continued trends and typical seasonality.”
In the past decade, the study says, fossil CO2 emissions decreased “significantly” in 25 countries. These countries were: Aruba, Barbados, Croatia, Czech Republic, North Korea, Denmark, France, Greece, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Malta, the Netherlands, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Trinidad and Tobago, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the US, Uzbekistan, and Venezuela. Notable was Germany, whose emissions did not decrease significantly.
The study continues, growth in global emissions of 1.6% in 2017 was within the range of the projected growth of 2.0% (range of 0.8 to 3.0%), adding, this was based on national emission projections for China, the US, and India and projections of gross domestic product corrected for fossil fuel carbon intensity of the economy (IFF trends) for the rest of the world.
In 2016, the study says, the largest absolute contributions to global CO2 emissions from a consumption perspective were China (25%), the US (16 %), the EU (12%), and India (6%). The difference between territorial and consumption emissions (the net emission transfer via international trade) has generally increased from 1990 to around 2005 and remained relatively stable afterwards until the last year available.

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