Boring but important
U.S. CO2 emissions spike upward
U.S. carbon dioxide emissions shot up 3.4 percent last year, the biggest increase in eight years, according to a report published this week. The spike, after three years of decline, occurred despite a near-record number of coal plants closing last year, and growing use of alternative-fuel vehicles and renewable power sources. Analysts at the Rhodium Group say the uptick is the result of a surging economy, with a manufacturing boom leading to a 5.7 percent increase in emissions from industrial sectors. Greenhouse gas emissions peaked at 6 billion metric tons in 2007, just before the start of the Great Recession. The Rhodium report comes in advance of the Environmental Protection Agency’s tally of carbon emissions, which won’t be released until 2020.