News and Events Involving Environmental Law, Published by Chicago Environmental Attorney Dave Scriven-Young
of Peckar & Abramson, P.C. -- (312) 881-6309

EPA Reports that U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions Rose 14% from 1990 to 2008

U.S. EPA has released its global warming document entitled “Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: 1990 – 2008.” In this document, EPA reported on domestic greenhouse gas emissions:

“In 2008, total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions were 6,946.1 Tg CO2 Eq. Overall, total U.S. emissions have risen by 14 percent from 1990 to 2008.  Emissions declined from 2007 to 2008, decreasing by 2.9 percent (206.1 Tg CO2 Eq.).  This decrease is primarily a result of a decrease in demand for transportation fuels associated with the record high costs of these fuels that occurred in 2008.  Additionally, electricity demand declined in 2008 in part due to a significant increase in the cost of fuels used to generate electricity.  In 2008, temperatures were cooler in the United States than in 2007, both in the summer and the winter.  This lead to an increase in heating related energy demand in the winter, however, much of this increase was offset by a decrease in cooling related electricity demand in the summer.”

According to EPA, the “primary greenhouse gas emitted by human activities in the United States was CO2, representing approximately 85.0 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions.  The largest source of CO2, and of overall greenhouse gas emissions, was fossil fuel combustion.”

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