Carbon Dioxide Greenhouse Gas Emissions Are Falling Under Trump

New reports show that even though President Trump is removing Obama’s climate policies, greenhouse gas emissions in the US still dropped, due to the falling cost of fracked natural gas. Carbon dioxide emissions in the US fell by 42 million tons in 2017 compared with 2016.  In contrast, emissions are rising in Europe and much of the rest of the world. According to the BP data, Europe’s carbon dioxide emissions rose 92 million tons, or 2.5%. China, the world’s biggest polluter, had an increase of 119 million tons, or 1.6%. Canada’s rose 3.4%.

Environmental data for 2017 are pouring in, and the results might not be what you’d expect.

In the United States, where President Trump has promised to unshackle the coal industry and to abandon an international climate change treaty, greenhouse-gas emissions fell last year and are expected to continue falling.

In Europe, where political leaders consider climate change an urgent priority, emissions rose last year.

In the United States, a report released last week by the Rhodium Group says that even though Trump “continues to unravel Obama-era climate and clean energy policies,” falling costs of renewable energy and natural gas are “keeping U.S. greenhouse gas emissions on the downswing.”

The latest government data show emissions have fallen 12 percent from 2005 to 2016. The Rhodium Group report estimates that by 2020, emissions will have fallen between 15 percent and 17 percent compared with 2005 levels.

Private-sector data is also lending support to the view that American emissions are still falling. An estimate by BP, released last month, shows U.S. carbon dioxide emissions in 2017 fell by 42 million tons compared with the previous year—a bigger drop than any other country—equaling a reduction of 0.5 percent in the first year of the Trump presidency.

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