Things That Make You Go Hmmmmm

Yesterday Hot Air posted an article about the level of carbon dioxide emissions in the United States. It seems that carbon dioxide emissions fell once again in 2012, bringing the United States’ emissions levels down to a two-decade low.

This is the chart:

Graph of annual light bulb sales, as explained in the article text

So what is responsible for the drop in carbon dioxide emissions– the increased use of natural gas obtained by hydraulic fracturing. This has got to drive the environmentalists nuts.

The article at Hot Air reports:

The largest drop in emissions in 2012 came from coal, which is used almost exclusively for electricity generation (see figure below). During 2012, particularly in the spring and early summer, low natural gas prices led to competition between natural gas- and coal-fired electric power generators. Lower natural gas prices resulted in reduced levels of coal generation, and increased natural gas generation—a less carbon-intensive fuel for power generation, which shifted power generation from the most carbon-intensive fossil fuel (coal) to the least carbon-intensive fossil fuel (natural gas).

The article concludes:

It’s yet another piece of evidence that environmental quality and economic prosperity are not mutually exclusive, even on a large scale; the innovations, efficiencies, and technological developments that come with an advanced economy can be good for both humanity and the planet.

The comment above represents the kind of balance we need more of in the environmental movement.

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