Provide your email for confirmation

Tell us a bit about yourself

country *

Please provide your email address

welcome to Rappler

Login

To share your thoughts

Don't have an account?

Login with email

Check your inbox

We just sent a link to your inbox. Click the link to continue signing in. Can’t find it? Check your spam & junk mail.

Didn't get a link?

Sign up

Ready to get started

Already have an account?

Sign up with email

By signing up you agree to Rappler’s Terms and Conditions and Privacy

Check your inbox

We just sent a link to your inbox. Click the link to continue registering. Can’t find it? Check your spam & junk mail.

Didn't get a link?

Join Rappler+

How often would you like to pay?

Annual Subscription

Monthly Subscription

Your payment was interrupted

Exiting the registration flow at this point will mean you will loose your progress

Your payment didn’t go through

Exiting the registration flow at this point will mean you will loose your progress

welcome to Rappler+

COVID-19 causes largest US greenhouse gas emissions drop since World War II – report

US greenhouse gas emissions fell 10.3% in 2020, the largest drop in emissions in the post-World War II era, as the coronavirus crippled the economy, according to a report released Tuesday, January 12, by the Rhodium Group.

The economic fallout from the uncontrolled spread of COVID-19 – especially in big emitting sectors like transportation, power and industry – resulted in a sharper emissions drop than the 2009 recession, when emissions slid 6.3%.

The drop means that the United States would outperform its pledge made under the Copenhagen climate accord to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 17% below 2005 levels by 2020. Emissions will actually drop by 21.5% compared with 2005.

But the report's authors warned that the dip should not be seen as a guarantee that the United States can easily meet its more ambitious pledge under the Paris climate agreement to cut emissions 28% below 2005 levels by 2025.

President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris accord, but President-elect Joe Biden has said he intends to rejoin as soon as he is inaugurated on Jan. 20. He plans to set the country on a path to net-zero emissions by 2050 but will first need to announce a target for reducing emissions by 2030.

"With coronavirus vaccines now in distribution, we expect economic activity to pick up again in 2021, but without meaningful structural changes in the carbon intensity of the US economy, emissions will likely rise again as well," the report by the research group said.

Leading the decline was the transportation sector, which saw a sharp emissions drop of 14.7% from 2019 levels as travel diminished, especially at the start of the pandemic last March, the report said.

Power plant emissions saw the second largest decline, dropping 10.3% below 2019 levels, driven by retirements of coal-fired power plants and a general decline in electricity demand due to the economic damage from the pandemic, the report said. – Rappler.com