Thursday, March 27, 2008

Cold Winters and Greenhouse Gases

This has been an unusually cold winter in the northern hemisphere, and as The Oil Drum points out, natural gas use is up. Presumably heating oil is too.
Q: how much more CO2e will be emitted because of the cold winter?
I've seen this type of calculation done -- somewhere -- about the additional power consumption of air conditioners as the world warms. Ought to be a similar calculation here....

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


Coal is the big swing in CO2 terms.

Colder means more electric heat (many people, particularly poor people, in places like the UK don't have gas heat)

and it also means more domestic heat in places like China (were coal is the major source of domestic cooking and heating, even still in the pollution-clogged cities). This would also be true in Central Asia.

There is a natural gas impact (although I am told in Ontario the degree days this winter are actually average, despite all the snow) but you'll see a bigger CO2 swing out of the coal burnt.

(increased wood burn in Scandinavia and North America as well).