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EPA annual GHG report shows emissions from power plants declined 10% from 2010 due to growing use of natural gas
23 October 2013
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its third year of greenhouse gas data detailing greenhouse gas emissions and trends broken down by industrial sector, greenhouse gas, geographic region, and individual facility. Data for 2012 show that in the two years since reporting began, emissions from power plants have decreased 10%. This is due to a switch from coal to natural gas for electricity generation and a slight decrease in electricity production.
Fossil-fuel fired power plants remain the largest source of US greenhouse gas emissions. With just less than 1,600 facilities emitting more than 2 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide in 2012, these plants account for roughly 40% of total anthropogenic CO2 emissions in the US.
EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program collects annual greenhouse gas information from more than 8,000 facilities in the largest emitting industries, including power plants, oil and gas production and refining, iron and steel mills, and landfills.
In addition, the program is receiving data on the increasing production and consumption of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) predominantly used in refrigeration and air-conditioning. The Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program is the only program that collects facility-level greenhouse gas data from major industrial sources across the United States.
The data are accessible through EPA’s online data publication tool, FLIGHT, which is available for both desktop and mobile devices. This year, with three years of data for most sources, FLIGHT has been updated with new features, including the ability to view trend graphs by sector and facility, and download charts and graphs for use in presentations and reports. The data are also published through EnviroFacts, which allows the public to download data for further analyses.
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