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A report says that 80% of the CO2 emissions worldwide can be attributed to only 57 producers

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A new report called “The Carbon Majors Database: Launch Report” by InfluenceMap highlights a crucial aspect of the climate crisis, revealing a worrying concentration of greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Just 57 companies that extract fossil fuels are responsible for 80% of emissions since 2016, showing their huge impact on the climate.
  • Despite promising to address climate change, these companies continue to expand their production of fossil fuels, making emissions worse.
  • There is hope from a shift to clean energy, as many companies are calling for a gradual reduction in the use of fossil fuels.

A new report by InfluenceMap called “The Carbon Majors Database: Launch Report” reveals a concerning concentration of greenhouse gas emissions, with 57 fossil fuel and cement producers responsible for 80% of global CO2 emissions since the signing of the Paris Agreement in 2016. This equals 251 GtCO2e, highlighting the large role these corporations play in driving climate change.

These findings align with the Carbon Majors Database from 2013, which tracks the historical emissions of 122 of the world's largest oil, gas, coal, and cement producers. The data shows that 70% of global fossil fuel and cement CO2 emissions since the industrial revolution can be attributed to 78 corporate and state-owned entities.

The top emitters include state-owned giants like Saudi Aramco, Gazprom, and Coal India, alongside investor-owned companies like ExxonMobil, Chevron, BP, and Shell.

The InfluenceMap report reveals a concerning trend: despite global commitments to reduce climate change, most of these companies have actually increased their production of fossil fuels since 2015. This has outpaced the growth of renewable energy, leading to a record high of global energy-related CO2 emissions in 2022.

There is some hope in the data. The Carbon Majors Database shows a shift in coal supply since 2015, moving away from investor-owned companies towards state-controlled entities. While the increase in state-controlled coal emissions is worrying, it suggests a potential turning point in the global energy landscape.

The Carbon Majors Database empowers various stakeholders. Legal cases, like the one against TotalEnergies, use the database's tracked data to demonstrate the link between a company's actions and climate damage. Investors and campaign groups also use this information to assess companies' environmental commitments and hold them accountable for their impact on climate change.

Moreover, many companies have responded to the Carbon Majors’ findings by calling for a gradual end to fossil fuels before COP28. This increasing acknowledgment of the need to switch to cleaner energy sources is shown by initiatives like the We Mean Business Coalition’s Fossil to Clean campaign, which highlights the economic and environmental advantages of moving away from fossil fuels.

The clear reality presented by the Carbon Majors Database emphasizes the urgent necessity for a coordinated global effort to move away from fossil fuels. The report is an effective tool for holding major polluters accountable, informing the public and policymakers, and speeding up the transition to a clean energy future. It also indicates a potential requirement for stricter regulations or market mechanisms to encourage a faster transition. With a small number of actors responsible for a large portion of emissions, focused policies could significantly reduce global CO2 production.

As the world grapples with the increasing impacts of climate change, the Carbon Majors Database provides a way forward. By holding polluters accountable, promoting a global shift towards clean energy, and implementing specific regulations, we can lessen the worst effects of climate change and create a more sustainable future for everyone.

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