London, September 22 (ANI): The worldwide recession might have sent the financial markets in a tizzy, but reports indicate that it is also likely to bring the biggest annual fall in the world's carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in 40 years.
According to a report by BBC news, the International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that global CO2 emissions will fall by more than 2 percent during 2009.
Measures such as emissions trading have complemented the drop in emissions as economic activity has declined.
The anticipated fall in emissions is larger than that seen during the recession of the early 1980s.
The close relationship between GDP and carbon emissions is well documented, so many commentators were expecting that the recession might cause emissions to drop.
But the size of the fall has come as something of a surprise.
The IEA estimates that the recession is responsible for about three-quarters of the fall.
As well as curtailing the business sector's energy use by applying a general economic brake, the straitened circumstances have reportedly led to deferments on investment in new fossil fuel plants.
The remaining quarter of the reduction comes from policies designed to curb CO2 production, according to the IEA.
The EU's Emissions Trading Scheme is one cited by the agency; others are improvements to vehicle fuel efficiency in the US, and China's economy-wide drive to increase energy efficiency. (ANI)