Although factories have been closed, planes have been grounded, and cars have been left in the garage, the coronavirus pandemic has very little impact on climate change, the World Meteorological Organization said on Wednesday.
A reduction in pollution and carbon emissions is likely to be temporary, said Lars Peter Riishojgaard of the WMO's Infrastructure Department, a United Nations organization based in Geneva.
"It doesn't mean much for the climate," he said at a virtual press conference.
Lars Peter Riishojgaard said there is a lot of media speculation about the impact the global pandemic could have on climate, greenhouse gas emissions and longer-term global warming.
The official of the UN agency said that there
"The answer to that is that it probably doesn't mean much," he said.
While short-term carbon dioxide emissions would decrease if cars stopped and planes remained on the ground, "we expect the effects to be short-lived," said Lars Peter Riishojgaard.
"The pandemic will be over at some point and the world will get back to work. This will increase CO2 emissions again, maybe or maybe not quite at the same level."
He said visibility in cities like New Delhi has improved because there are fewer traffic-emitting fumes, but warned that normal activity would only be "artificially stopped."
"You could see it as a scientific experiment: what happens if we suddenly turn it off?" he said.
"It will get some people and maybe some governments to rethink."
He considered that China stopped much of its industrial production during the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.
"They showed very clearly that if you have enough control over the situation, you can absolutely turn off air pollution," he said.
"But I don't think we should still win here because things will recover at some point."
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and published from a syndicated feed.)