Greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) in the U.S. decreased 3.4 percent in 2012 from 2011, according to a report from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The decrease was reported in The Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks, the agency’s annual report on GHG emissions released Tuesday.
The report states the major contributors to the decrease in emissions from 2011 to 2012 were a decrease in carbon intensity for power generation caused by fuel switching from coal to natural gas and a decrease in energy consumption across all sectors in the U.S. economy. Other factors include a decrease in transportation sector emissions attributed to an increase in fuel efficiency across different transportation modes and limited new demand for passenger transportation.
GHG emissions in 2012 showed a 10 percent drop from 2005 levels, according to the EPA.
The EPA prepares the annual report in collaboration with other federal agencies. The report tracks U.S. GHG emissions as well as calculating carbon dioxide emissions removed from the atmosphere through the uptake of carbon in forests, vegetation, soils and other natural processes.