White House Reacts to Recent UN Climate Change Report and Releases Data Stating Greenhouse Gas Emissions Dropped 3 Percent Under President Trump

Oct 26, 2018

The UN recently released a report noting that if greenhouse gas (gHg) emissions continue at the current rate, there could be severe long-term consequences (see the Capitol Update Article on this report here). In response to the report, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler stated that the agency is taking the report’s findings very seriously. He cited new data the White House recently released by the EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GGRP), which states that gHg emissions have dropped since President Trump assumed office.

According to the recently released GGRP data, gHg emissions decreased by 2.7 percent between 2016 and 2017. “The 2.7 percent reduction shows what an advancement in technologies can do in the private sector without government intervention stepping in. I think that’s very important,” Wheeler said.

The data notes that this decrease is part of a longer-term reduction that has been occurring over the past decade and can be attributed to the uptick in renewable energy use.

Supporting what the UN report notes, the GGRP data concurs that the Power Plants Sector was the largest emitter of gHg, emitting 1.8 billion metric tons of CO2e in 2017. On a positive note however, since 2011 there has been a 19.3 percent decline in gHg emissions from power plants collectively across the country. The second largest emitter of gHg after power plants, by something of a longshot, was the Petroleum and Natural Gas Systems Sector with 284 million metric tons (MMT) of CO2e, followed by the Chemicals Sector with 184 MMT CO2e.

To view the GGRP report in full, click here: https://www.epa.gov/ghgreporting/ghgrp-reported-data#emissions-trends