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U.S. Carbon Emissions Drop To Lowest Level Since 1994

Coal-fired power plant emissions

Carbon emissions from the United States have dropped to their lowest level since 1994, according to a report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The contributing factors are said to be a combination of the ongoing expansion of renewable energy, new developments in energy efficiency, and the shift to natural gas from coal-powered electricity.

C02 emissions  have fallen 13% in the past 5 years. This means that the United States is halfway to reaching President Obama’s stated goal of cutting emissions 17% below 2005 levels by 2020.

As far as the growing contribution of renewable energy goes, the U.S. reached a cumulative installed capacity of 86 gigawatts in 2012. Back in 2008 it was only 43 gigawatts, so definite progress is being made; that’s a doubling in less that 5 years. Coal-fired power also fell to just over 18% over the overall energy mix in the U.S., down from 22.5% in 2007. In addition, 488,000 hybrid and electric vehicles vehicles where sold last year in the U.S.

Imagine what the United States will achieve when Congress actually agrees to act on climate change in the months and years ahead.

Image credit: publicphoto.org

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