Climate Action

Data project backed by Al Gore aims for real-time emissions monitoring

Al Gore, former U.S. Vice President and Climate Reality Project Chairman speaks at davos

The coalition releasing the data backed by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore. Image: REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

Ross Kerber
Share:
Our Impact
What's the World Economic Forum doing to accelerate action on Climate Action?
The Big Picture
Explore and monitor how SDG 13: Climate Action is affecting economies, industries and global issues
A hand holding a looking glass by a lake
Crowdsource Innovation
Get involved with our crowdsourced digital platform to deliver impact at scale
Stay up to date:

SDG 13: Climate Action

This article is part of: Sustainable Development Impact Summit
  • A new set of previously unrecorded fossil fuel and emissions data is set to be released by a technology and academic coalition backed by Al Gore.
  • The information uses data from satellites and high-level computer analysis.
  • The group says oil and gas producers in developed countries may emit over a billion tons of carbon dioxide that is not currently being reported.
  • Shipping industry emissions have grown about 10% each year since 2018 despite the COVID-19 pandemic, says the group.
  • The release of the report comes ahead of the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow.

A technology and academic coalition backed by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore was set to unveil on 16 September 2021 data showing fossil fuel producers' previously unrecorded greenhouse gas emissions, and growing pollution from shipping and aviation.

Other details about the precise sources of climate change are also shown in the material by Climate TRACE, drawing on data from satellites and high-level computer analysis.

The data should be useful to leaders of the 100 countries that have little data on their most-polluting sectors, Gore said in an interview on Wednesday.

Among worrisome trends, oil and gas producers and refiners in developed countries may emit over a billion tons of carbon dioxide not currently being reported, the group said.

Shipping industry emissions have grown about 10% each year since 2018 despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the group added.

Gore said the new data should not lead to pessimism since the additional emissions have already shown up in gauges of atmospheric carbon.

Have you read?
a chart showing worldwide emissions
Oil and gas producers in developed countries may emit over a billion tons of carbon dioxide that is not currently being reported. Image: Our World in Data

"As the old cliche has it, you can only manage what you can measure," Gore said.

The release comes ahead of the COP26 world climate conference set to start in Glasgow, Scotland on Oct. 31. Talks there are aimed to spur more ambitious commitments by countries to keep the global average temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius during this century, in line with the 2015 Paris Accord. [nL1N2Q91SV]

Climate TRACE's name invokes its goal of 'Tracking Real-time Atmospheric Carbon Emissions." The coalition grew from a Google.org grant that funded the measurement of power plant emissions from space, it said in a statement.

Discover

What’s the World Economic Forum doing about climate change?

Providers of satellite data for the project include Planet Labs Inc, NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploratory Agency. Other coalition members include geospatial data company Blue Sky Analytics, research organization CarbonPlan, and Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory.

Loading...
Don't miss any update on this topic

Create a free account and access your personalized content collection with our latest publications and analyses.

Sign up for free

License and Republishing

World Economic Forum articles may be republished in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Public License, and in accordance with our Terms of Use.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.

Related topics:
Climate ActionNature and BiodiversityForum Institutional
Share:
World Economic Forum logo
Global Agenda

The Agenda Weekly

A weekly update of the most important issues driving the global agenda

Subscribe today

You can unsubscribe at any time using the link in our emails. For more details, review our privacy policy.

How Indigenous expertise is empowering climate action: A case study from Oceania

Amanda Young and Ginelle Greene-Dewasmes

April 23, 2024

About Us

Events

Media

Partners & Members

  • Join Us

Language Editions

Privacy Policy & Terms of Service

© 2024 World Economic Forum