Brazil environmentalists: greenhouse gases rise

AP News
Posted: Nov 19, 2014 1:05 PM

SAO PAULO (AP) — Emission levels of greenhouse gases in Latin America's biggest country were almost 8 percent higher in 2013 than one year earlier, a Brazilian network of environmental groups said Wednesday.

The Observatorio do Clima, or Climate Observatory, is comprised of more than 30 non-governmental organizations focused on climate change.

It said in a report that greenhouse gas emissions amounted to 1.57 billion metric tons in 2013 compared to 1.45 billion metric tons in 2012.

The increase represents a reversal in the trend that started in 2005 when emissions of greenhouse gases dropped year-by-year as deforestation levels fell, the report said.

The report said that soil use changes in 2013 accounted for 16.48 percent of the emissions due to increased deforestation levels in the Amazon region and in the savanna-like ecosystem known as the Cerrado in central Brazil.

The energy sector accounted for 7.8 percent of the emissions because of the increased use of thermoelectric plants and greater consumption of gasoline and diesel for transportation purposes, the report said.

Climate Observatory's secretary general, Carlos Rittl said in a statement that Brazil is not investing enough in alternative sources of energy.

He said that while Brazil focuses most of it attention on developing is vast offshore pre-salt oil reserves, countries like the United States, China and Germany are investing in renewable energy sources "becoming more economically competitive and moving forward, while we are being left behind."