Carbon emissions from energy flatlined in 2019, due in large part to developed nations phasing out coal and adopting renewables and switching to natural gas, the International Energy Agency said Tuesday.
In the United States, emissions fell by 2.9 percent – the largest decline of any country – while Japan’s emissions dropped by 4 percent, the fastest rate of decline.
Coal use in developed nations dropped by nearly 15 percent last year, the report said.
“This welcome halt in emissions growth is grounds for optimism that we can tackle the climate challenge this decade,” IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol said in a statement. “It is evidence that clean energy transitions are underway – and it’s also a signal that we have the opportunity to meaningfully move the needle on emissions through more ambitious policies and investments.”