The projected emissions increase shows the U.S. is now further off the target set by the Biden administration under the Paris climate agreement to slash emissions 50-52% below 2005 levels by 2030. U.S. greenhouse gas emissions were 17.4% below 2005 levels in 2021, up from 22.2% below 2005 levels in 2020, according to the Rhodium Group, a research organization.
The group analyzed preliminary U.S. emissions data for 2021, a year that was supposed to be marked by recovery after the pandemic-related upheaval of the economy. It found that emissions growth outpaced the rate of economic recovery, using estimates that GDP grew by 5.7% year-on-year.
Driving the emissions growth were the transportation and electric power sectors, whose greenhouse gas emissions rose 10% and 6.6%, respectively in 2021, both rebounding around 2/3 of the drop from 2019 levels.
In the power sector, high natural gas prices led to a 17% rise in coal generation – the first increase since 2014 – which drove up emissions.
The U.S. transportation sector, which accounts for nearly a third of net US emissions, saw the largest spike in emissions in 2021, a year after experiencing a 15% decline in 2020 from 2019 levels – the largest decline in greenhouse gas emissions led by a drastic drop in road travel due to the coronavirus.
Copyright © 2019 - 2021 | TryNaija