This was found on PioneerLocal.com
Though carbon dioxide emissions have decreased about 50 percent in Illinois and Indiana over the past decade, both states rank among the nation’s 10 ten worst in emissions of carbon dioxide from power plants in 2010, according to an environmental watchdog group.
A new report from the Environmental Integrity Project shows that carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from power plants in the U.S. rose 5.56 percent in 2010 over the year before, the biggest annual increase since the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency began tracking emissions in 1995.
The report is based on data from the EPA’s “Clean Air Markets” website, which tallies emission reports from electric generators, according to a release from the Integrity Project, a nonprofit environmental group created in 2002 by former EPA enforcement attorneys to advocate for effective enforcement of environmental laws.
Texas power plants led the pack in 2010, with nearly 257 million tons of CO2 emissions, as much as the next two states combined (Florida and Ohio), and more than seven times the total CO2 emissions from power plants in California, according to the release.
The 10 worst states for CO2 pollution identified in the report are Texas, Florida, Ohio, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama, and Missouri.
Indiana, ranked No. 4, had 123,695,438 million tons of CO2 emissions.
While the amount of CO2 emissions in Indiana has gone down 53 percent since 2000, the release said, there was an increase of about 6 million tons from 2009 to 2010.
Illinois ranked No. 6, with 107,082,729 tons of C02 emissions, also an increase from 2009, by about 4 million tons. Since 2000, however, Illinois has seen a 49 percent drop in C02 emissions.
According to the release, nationwide C02 emissions from power plants rose 5.56 percent in 2010 over the previous year, the biggest annual increase since the EPA began tracking emissions in 1995.
Electricity generators released 2.423 billion tons of carbon dioxide in 2010, compared to 2.295 billion tons in 2009, according to information available in the EPA’s “Clean Air Markets” database.
Power plant emissions are still below the high water mark of 2.565 million tons set in 2007.
Last year’s rise was driven in part by a 4 percent net increase in overall generation for the 12 months ending in November of 2010, as a result of the economic recovery and unusually warm weather in some parts of the country.
Commenting on the report, Integrity Project’s director, Eric Schaeffer, said: “The industry’s allies on Capitol Hill are working hard to turn back the clock by repealing environmental standards for coal plants that are already many years overdue. Congress may weaken or even eliminate EPA’s ability to stop coal plant pollution, and block further study of climate change. But even the most powerful legislature in the world is subject to the laws of science, and global warming will not disappear because our politicians choose to pretend that it does not exist.”
Average global temperatures last year reached the 2005 level, the warmest year on record.
Carbon dioxide is the most prevalent of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming. The combustion of fossil fuels for electricity generation in the U.S. accounts for more than one third of our nation’s total U.S. releases of CO2, and about 5 percent of CO2 emissions worldwide.
Coal-fired boilers provided 45 percent of U.S. electricity in 2010, but were responsible for 81 percent of total CO2 emissions from electricity generation last year.