U.S. utilities reduce power plant emissions since 2008, report says

 U.S. utilities reduce power plant emissions since 2008, report says

A report from MJ Bradley & Associates LLC says that most of the largest electric utilities in the U.S. have significantly reduced power plant emissions in recent years.
 
The “Benchmarking Air Emissions” report examines carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide (SO2), and mercury emissions from the 100 largest electric power producers. It found that CO2 emissions from power plants decreased 12 percent from 2008 through 2013, and that the economy continued to grow even as emissions declined. In the same timeframe, 42 states decreased electric sector CO2 emissions by an average of 19 percent, compared to past Benchmarking reports.
 
However, the report found uneven performance across both power producers and the states. CO2 emissions rates, a measure of the carbon intensity of a producer’s fuel mix, vary 10-fold among the top 100 power producers, from a high of 2,264 pounds of CO2 per megawatt-hour of power (lb/MWh) for Big Rivers Electric in 2013, to 200 lb/MWh or less for companies such as Exelon (NYSE: EXC), New York Power Authority, PG&E Corp. (NYSE: PCG), and Iberdrola. The report says Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), AEP (NYSE: AEP), Southern Co. (NYSE: SO), NRG (NYSE: NRG) and MidAmerican generate 25 percent of CO2 emissions, though Southern has seen a 27 percent decline since 2000, and Duke a 10 percent drop even after its merger with Progress Energy. AEP, Southern and NRG generate nearly one-fourth of SO2 emissions.
 
“Most parts of the country are firmly on the path toward a clean energy future, but some states and utilities have a longer way to go and overall the carbon emissions curve is still not bending fast enough,” said Mindy Lubber, president of Ceres. “To level the playing field for all utilities, and achieve the broader CO2 emissions cuts needed to combat climate change, we need final adoption of the Clean Power Plan.”
 
Bank of America, Calpine Corp. (NYSE: CPN), Ceres, Entergy (NYSE: ETR), Exelon, PSEG and the National Resources Defense Council contributed to the report.
 
To download the full report, click here.



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