No denying CO2 decline

Carbon dioxide emissions in the United States dropped again in 2012. They declined 3.8 percent even though the U.S. economy grew 2.8 percent, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

That means, since 2007 CO2 emissions in this country have dropped by 11 percent, and we’re now at the lowest level since 1994.

Worldwide, total emissions of this climate-change gas haven’t dropped, but their rate of increase has slowed considerably, thanks in large part to reductions in the United States and increasing use of hydropower in China.

Initially, the decline in this country was attributed primarily to the slowdown in the economy that began in 2008. And that certainly played a part. So did a warm winter this past year. Improved fuel efficiency of vehicles and fewer miles traveled also were key.

But equally important was the continuing switch from coal to natural gas to fire electrical generators, according to the Energy Information Administration.

One more very important reason we should be looking for ways to increase our natural gas production, not hobble it.


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