Carbon dioxide gas is transparent to incoming solar radiation. However, it is opaque to exiting terrestrial radiation. That is why it is a meteorologically important gas.
It absorbs some terrestrial radiation and reflects some of it back to the earth's surface. It is a major contributor to the greenhouse effect.
Because it is denser than air, its concentration is higher near the earth's surface.
The total amount of Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) (particularly carbon dioxide and methane) released into the atmosphere by various human activities is referred to as a carbon footprint.
Carbon footprints can be linked to a person, a company, a product, or an event, among other things.
A carbon footprint, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), is a measurement of the impact of people's actions on the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) created by burning fossil fuels, and is stated as a weight of CO2 emissions produced in tonnes.
The carbon footprint is considered a subset of the ecological footprint, in which the former compares the total resources people consume with the land and water area required to replace those resources, while the former compares the total resources people consume with the land and water area required to replace those resources.
The carbon footprint will include the release of six greenhouse gases as defined by the Kyoto Protocol. The Six Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) are:
• Carbon dioxide (CO2)
• Methane (CH4)
• Nitrous Oxide (N2O)
• Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
• Perfluorocarbon (PFCs)
• Sulphur hexafluoride (SF6)
Carbon footprints are typically calculated in equivalent tonnes of CO2 - CO2e – over the course of a year.
CO2e is derived by multiplying each of the six greenhouse gases' emissions by their global warming potential over a 100-year period (GWP).
When comparing the carbon footprints of various energy sources, coal has the highest carbon footprint, followed by oil, natural gas, and geothermal energy.
Organizational — Emissions from all aspects of the business, including energy use, industrial processes, and company vehicles.
Product - Emissions resulting from the extraction of raw materials and production of the product, as well as its use and eventual reuse, recycling, or disposal, i.e. over the product's or service's entire life cycle.
The Carbon Watch App focuses on the actions of individuals and analyses carbon footprints based on transportation, energy, waste, and water consumption.
It is possible for everyone to use the app.
Carbon Watch is an app that will provide information on an individual's degree of emission generation as well as the national and global average.
It will raise awareness of people's lifestyle emissions, their impact, and feasible mitigation strategies.
The goal of the Carbon Watch app is to make individuals Climate-Smart Citizens who are aware of their carbon footprint and can take steps to lessen it.
According on the information provided by the users, the Carbon Watch app will advise strategies to reduce carbon footprints.
CARBON EMISSION AND ITS EFFECTS
• Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in India are expected to grow at its slowest in 2019, according to an analysis published in ‘Carbon Brief.' This is a gain of barely 2% from 2018. Since 2001, the annual rate of increase has been lower than 2%.
• According to the International Energy Agency's 2018 report:
India's emissions per capita were almost 40% of the global average.
The emissions were responsible for 7% of the global carbon dioxide burden.
The United States, being one of the top emitters, contributed 14%.
• Climate change is exacerbated by carbon footprints. The release of greenhouse gases in high percentage into the atmosphere causes global warming.
• The effects of global warming includes:
Melting of ice caps
Increase in temperature
Extreme climatic changes
Harmful for human health
Carbon sinks deteriorates
Loss of biodiversity
• According to records kept by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the decade 2011-2020 was the warmest on record, continuing a long-term climate change trend.
• Between 1990 and 2005, carbon dioxide emissions grew by 31%. By 2008, the emissions have resulted in a 35% rise in radiative warming, or a shift in the Earth's energy balance toward warming, compared to 1990 levels.
• The goal of the international community is to keep the average surface temperatures below 2°C than the pre-industrial levels.
• The carbon dioxide concentration level associated with a 2°C increase in global temperatures is commonly thought to be 450 ppm.
INDIA ON CARBON EMISSION
• In 2018, India emitted 2,299 million tonnes of carbon dioxide, up 4.8 percent from the previous year, with coal (power generation) and oil (transport) being the two major sources of pollution.
• Despite this, the country's per capita discharge remained low, at 40% of the global average.
• India's emissions increased faster than those of the United States and China, the world's two largest emitters, in 2018, owing to an increase in coal usage.
• India's energy intensity improved by 3% in 2019, despite a 10.6% rise in renewable energy installations in the same year.
• India has vowed to reduce its economy's emissions intensity by 2030, relative to 2005 levels, as part of its commitments to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
• It has also promised to obtaining 40% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030 and to installing 100 GW of solar power by 2022 as part of this goal.
STEPS TAKEN TO KEEP A CHECK ON GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSION
Carbon Pricing - A carbon price is a tax imposed on carbon pollution in order to persuade polluters to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas released into the atmosphere.
Carbon tax is an example of a pollution tax. It charges a cost for the production, distribution, and use of fossil fuels according on the amount of carbon released during combustion. It is a low-cost method of lowering greenhouse gas emissions in the environment.
Carbon sequestration - It is the technique of trapping waste carbon dioxide (CO2) from large point sources, such as fossil fuel power plants, and storing it in a location where it will not be released into the atmosphere.
COP 21 — The Paris Climate Accord requires members who have accepted the agreement to work toward reaching net-zero emissions, which is critical for limiting global warming. This scenario necessitates a rapid increase in carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (CCUS). CO2 emissions from coal and gas power plants, as well as heavy industry, are captured and stored or reused in this process.
The Montreal Protocol aims to protect the ozone layer by limiting the production and consumption of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODSs).
Bharat Stage (BS) VI norms: These are government-imposed emission control requirements aimed at reducing air pollution.
The major goal of the National Wind-Solar Hybrid Policy 2018 is to create a framework for the promotion of large grid-connected wind-solar photovoltaic (PV) hybrid systems for the most optimal and efficient use of wind and solar resources, transmission infrastructure, and land.
The National Solar Mission is a major project of the Indian government and state governments to encourage environmentally friendly growth while also solving India's energy security problem.
The National Mission for Enhanced Energy Efficiency (NMEEE) was established in 2011 with the goal of strengthening the energy efficiency industry by establishing favourable laws and regulations.
The National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) was started in June 2008 with the goal of developing a comprehensive policy to combat climate change.