Global warming emissions in the United States increased by 6.2 percent last year

Over the past year, greenhouse gas emissions in the United States increased 6.2% compared to 2020 levels, according to a new report from the US Department of Agriculture. The jump puts the country further behind in achieving its reduction targets. Under the agreement, the US pledged to cut its greenhouse emissions between 50 percent and 52 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. As of last year, they were 17.4 percent below that benchmark. This is a step back from the 22.2 percent reduction the country achieved in the previous year.

The overall increase in emissions was caused by corresponding jumps in pollution from the country’s transportation and energy sectors. Compared to 2021, these sectors produced an additional 10 percent and 6.6 percent of greenhouse emissions. The increases were driven by a 17 percent increase in reliance on coal-generated power and an increase in the number of people driving after the pandemic-related downturn.

The report underscores how important it is for the United States to clean up the power grid and transportation sector. Another recent study found that wind and solar energy can meet the country’s current electricity needs. Much of whether the United States will live up to its commitments under the Paris Agreement depends on whether the country can mobilize investment as part of policies such as those of President Biden. The bill’s fate is, but what is clear is that the technology is there to enable a clean transition. The price of natural gas was not affordable before, yet it was still more expensive than it.

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