1 August 2012
Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the U.S. from energy use were the lowest between January-March 2012 than they have been in the past two decades in the same time period, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)’s June Monthly Energy Review.
CO2 emissions from energy use totaled 1,340 million metric tons (mmt) during the first quarter, down nearly 8 percent from the prior year and the lowest for the quarter since 1992.
Emissions from coal were down 18 percent to 387 million metric tons, the lowest from coal since 1983 and the lowest for any quarter since April-June 1986 (second quarter).
Emissions from natural gas were down 2.8 percent to about 391 mmt in 1Q 2012. Though power producers used more natural gas, overall CO2 emissions were down because of the mild winter contributing to lower gas heating demand.
The electric power sector made up 27 percent of the CO2 emissions from natural gas and 90 percent of coal’s CO2 emissions.