CO2 emissions rose: Energy-related carbon emissions rose in US in 2018


After three years of decline, climate change causing carbon dioxide emissions rose sharply in the USA last year according to new research.

Biodiesel is one commercially available, known solution to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to almost 90 percent compared to petroleum diesel, yet the federal government continues to set annual renewable volume obligations for biodiesel in the Renewable Fuel Standard well below volumes the US biodiesel industry can produce.

"We have lost momentum".

While the USA remains a major source of global carbon emissions, it isn't alone.

Still, carbon dioxide emissions are down 11 percent since 2005.

The increase in pollution from buildings highlights a particular problem for policymakers. It also said its numbers are in line with recent estimates from the Global Carbon Project, a group that works with researchers on greenhouse gases and climate change, which reported USA emissions likely rose 2.5% a year ago. This fuel emits less greenhouse gas than coal when burned but is still a major contributor overall.

For the last decade, the sector's emissions have declined largely due to economic forces - a decrease in power demand during the recession and a shift from coal to cheaper natural gas brought on by the fracking boom. The buildings and industrial sectors also both posted big year-on-year emissions gains.

The New York-based Rhodium Group, which released its findings on January 8, said its study used data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) and other sources.

The report estimates emissions from residential and commercial buildings increased by 10% past year, reaching "their highest level since 2004".

In other words, an unprecedented pace for the U.S.

Emissions reductions - alongside record energy development - were touted at an American Petroleum Institute event in Washington on January 8.

"It's not an isolated phenomenon", Mehling said, adding that the trend makes it hard to exclusively blame the Trump administration's deregulatory push and its dismissal of climate action for the change. None are created to reduce fossil fuel emissions, which the report said is needed to combat extreme climate change.

A new report has found that U.S. carbon dioxide emissions rose by 3.4% in 2018 after three years of decline.

A large part of President Barack Obama's plan for meeting that goal turned on key climate policies, including new regulations for vehicle fuel efficiency and power plants. But the Trump administration has moved to reverse or weaken them.

US emissions from the power sector had steadily declined in recent years due to a move away from coal-fired generation toward more natural gas-fired and renewable energy resources. In a major worldwide climate change meeting in Poland last month, the Trump administration hailed a 14 percent decline in emissions from 2005 levels. And the 14 percent figure has shrunk based on the latest findings.

"The tailwinds of Obama administration policy are dissipating", said Trevor Houser, a partner at the firm.

All this presents something of a problem for the Trump administration which has been happy to point to declining United States emissions as a reason to roll back numerous environmental protection regulations put in place by his predecessor.

In October, a United Nations-backed panel of almost 100 scientists offered a detailed accounting of what it would take to limit planetary warming to just 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) - with the world already experiencing a 1 degree Celsius increase. The Rhodium analysis found emissions from transportation rose 1% past year.

Despite this, there is little to cheer in the USA data for those concerned with climate change on a global scale. "The gap is even wider headed into 2019". New research suggests a broader view might be called for.

"As carbon emissions continue to climb, it is more important than ever that we do everything we can to support low-carbon fuels like biodiesel", Don Scott, sustainability director for the National Biodiesel Board, told Biodiesel Magazine.

The Rhodium Group report states that, in order to meet the Paris Agreement targets by 2025, the U.S.

"Other countries are going to be looking at the [2020 presidential] campaign", Wirth said.

That leaves a world facing a make-or-break decade for emissions reductions still unsure of exactly what role the United States will play, if any. "If you've got all presidential candidates with the exception of one running for election saying, 'I'm prepared to commit to bigger reductions, ' then that will resonate".

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