A new report notes that the United States led the world last year in reducing CO2 gas emissions, even as the country’s economic growth skyrocketed.
In addition, the report found that while the U.S. was meeting its climate change goals, “80 percent of the increase in CO2 emissions came from Asia and that China and India north contributed significantly” to worldwide increases.
“The United States saw the largest decline in energy-related CO2 emissions in 2019 on a country basis – a fall of 140 Mt, or 2.9%, to 4.8 Gt,” the International Energy Agency (IEA) reported Tuesday. “US emissions are now down almost 1 Gt from their peak in the year 2000, the largest absolute decline by any country over that period.”
“A 15% reduction in the use of coal for power generation underpinned the decline in overall US emissions in 2019,” the IEA continued.
“Coal-fired power plants faced even stronger competition from natural gas-fired generation, with benchmark gas prices an average of 45% lower than 2018 levels,” said the report.
“As a result, gas increased its share in electricity generation to a record high of 37%. Overall electricity demand declined because demand for air-conditioning and heating was lower as a result of milder summer and winter weather.”
The accomplishment was also noted by others who follow the issue.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) responded on Twitter, “FACT you will NEVER see on the 6 o’clock news: U.S. emissions FELL 2.9%, or by 140 million tons, continuing the trend of the United States LEADING THE WORLD IN TOTAL EMISSIONS DECLINE since 2000.”
The IEA’s report especially noted the rise in Asian emissions, though it added that they were likely leveling off.
“In China, emissions rose but were tempered by slower economic growth and higher output from low-carbon sources of electricity,” the agency said. “Renewables continued to expand in China, and 2019 was also the first full year of operation for seven large-scale nuclear reactors in the country.”
The success of the United States in cutting global “greenhouse gas” emissions has largely been overlooked by most Democrats, including those running for their party’s 2020 presidential nomination.