The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday published the data from the largest industrial sources across the country for the first time as part of its effort to reduce emissions.
Industry-heavy Texas generated 294 million metric tons of greenhouse gases in 2010, followed by Pennsylvania, with 129 million metric tons emitted.
Texas has 673 facilities reporting greenhouse gas emissions to the EPA, more than any other U.S. state. California came in second with 456 facilities reporting greenhouse gas emissions.
The EPA report also found that power plants were the largest stationary sources of direct emissions with 2,324 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, followed by petroleum refineries.
The EPA collected data from more than 6,700 industrial facilities that release at least 25,000 tons of greenhouse gases into the air a year.
For the first time, comprehensive greenhouse gas (GHG) data reported directly from large facilities and suppliers across the country are now easily accessible to the public through EPA’s GHG Reporting Program.
The 2010 GHG data released includes public information from facilities in nine industry groups that directly emit large quantities of GHGs, as well as suppliers of certain fossil fuels.
“Thanks to strong collaboration and feedback from industry, states and other organizations, today we have a transparent, powerful data resource available to the public,” said Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation.
“The GHG Reporting Program data provides a critical tool for businesses and other innovators to find cost- and fuel-saving efficiencies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and foster technologies to protect public health and the environment.”
EPA’s online data publication tool allows users to view and sort GHG data for calendar year 2010 from over 6,700 facilities in a variety of ways—including by facility, location, industrial sector, and the type of GHG emitted. This information can be used by communities to identify nearby sources of GHGs, help businesses compare and track emissions, and provide information to state and local governments.
GHG data for direct emitters show that in 2010:
Power plants were the largest stationary sources of direct emissions with 2,324 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (mmtCO2e), followed by petroleum refineries with emissions of 183 mmtCO2e.
CO2 accounted for the largest share of direct GHG emissions with 95 percent, followed by methane with 4 percent, and nitrous oxide and fluorinated gases accounting for the remaining 1 percent.
100 facilities each reported emissions over 7 mmtCO2e, including 96 power plants, two iron and steel mills and two refineries.
Mandated by the FY2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act, EPA launched the GHG Reporting Program in October 2009, requiring the reporting of GHG data from large emission sources across a range of industry sectors, as well as suppliers of products that would emit GHGs if released or combusted.
Most reporting entities submitted data for calendar year 2010. However, an additional 12 source categories will begin reporting their 2011 GHG data this year.