US power sector emissions ‘reach 27-year low’

Carbon emissions from the US electric power industry reached the lowest level in April this year, according to latest statistics. The sector, which includes the generation, transmission, distribution and sale […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

Carbon emissions from the US electric power industry reached the lowest level in April this year, according to latest statistics.

The sector, which includes the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity, emitted 128 million metric tons of carbon dioxide – believed to be the lowest for any month since April 1988.

Coal and natural gas account for almost all the carbon emissions from the electric power industry, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said.

In April, power generation from both coal and gas fell (18% and 6%).

“Consumption of natural gas in the electric power sector accounted for 36.4 MMmt [million metric tons) CO2 while coal use accounted for 89.4 MMmt CO2”, the EIA stated.

It added more electricity is now being generated from sources that don’t release carbon emissions as part of the generating process.

Nuclear production increased 3% and renewable generation rose 2% during the first four months of 2015 compared to the same time last year.

Although wind production fell 7%, hydroelectric generation, which accounts for around half of all renewable energy, rose 7%.