Plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles are growing in popularity but this hasn’t managed to stop the transportation sector from becoming the number one source of CO2 emissions in the United States.
According to Bloomberg, power plants were the key contributor to CO2 emissions for the past 40 years but the transition from coal to cleaner alternatives – such as natural gas and solar power – has dramatically reduced the amount of emissions that are produced.
As the U.S. Energy Information Administration notes, power plants produce approximately 1.8 billion metric tons of CO2 annually while the transportation sector now generates slightly more than that. However, this isn’t due to dirtier vehicles as the agency says since 2000 the United States has been experiencing the “flattest stretch of transportation-related pollution in modern record keeping.”
The reduction in emissions helps to limit climate change as well as the severity of various ailments such as asthma and heart disease. Unfortunately, these gains could be in jeopardy as President Trump has been pushing a return to coal. The President is also considering easing fuel economy standards which are set to take place in a few years.