- Apr 2013
- La La Land North
How to control climate change? Well, the cure might hurt more than the disease but it does show how carbon intensive our current lives are.
In the midst of China's COVID-19 epidemic, the conditions for an unprecedented climate experiment have emerged.
Climate researchers can measure in real time what happens to carbon emissions when one of the world's largest economies is suddenly stalled, with entire cities locked down, highways emptied, airplanes grounded, factories shuttered and millions of people confined to their homes.
A continent away, from his base in Helsinki, Finland, Lauri Myllyvirta was able to piece together industry and financial data sources and satellite imagery to calculate the epidemic's impact on emissions: a decrease of about 25% in three weeks.
"In terms of the absolute volume of emissions, this is absolutely unprecedented," he said.