Yesterday the International Energy Agency announced that global carbon emissions grew to 36.8 billion tons last year, more than any year on record but less than some feared given the energy fallout of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The 0.9% increase in emissions were largely a result of air travel and coal plants, though climate-related weather extremes also increased A/C demand and reduced hydropower availability, and US emissions grew due to methane gas use. While far from the 7% annual reductions needed to halve emissions this decade,

“Any emissions growth — even 1% — is a failure,” Stanford professor Rob Jackson said. But the not-quite-1% increase could have been worse, as renewables, electric cars and heat pumps prevented the release of 550 million tons of emissions. One in seven cars sold globally last year was an EV, and renewables accounted for 90% of last year’s growth in electric supply. IEA executive director Fatih Birol said that “Without clean energy, the growth in CO2 emissions would have been nearly three times as high.” Still, “it’s cuts or chaos for the planet,” according to Jackson. (AP, Bloomberg, Washington Post $, Reuters, FT $, PoliticoPRO $, Gizmodo, WSJ $, Insider