June 6, 2012
The Americans? Really?
Every year the International Energy Agency (IEA) calculates humanity’s CO2 pollution from burning fossil fuels. And once again, the overall story line is one of ever-increasing emissions:
“Global carbon-dioxide emissions from fossil-fuel combustionreached a record high of 31.6 gigatonnes in 2011.”
The world has yet to figure out how to stop the relentless increase in climate pollution. But mixed in with all the bad news there was one shining ray of hope. One of the biggest obstacles to climate action may be shifting. As the IEA highlighted:
“US emissions have now fallen by 430 Mt (7.7%) since 2006, the largest reduction of all countries or regions. This development has arisen from lower oil use in the transport sector … and a substantial shift from coal to gas in the power sector.”
How big is a cut of 430 million tonnes of CO2? It’s equal to all CO2 from all Canadians outside Alberta. From a US perspective, it’s equal to eliminating the combined emissions of ten western states: Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Utah and Nevada.
It seems the planet’s biggest all-time CO2 polluter is finally reducing its emissions.
This article was posted: Wednesday, June 6, 2012 at 3:18 am