Carbon dioxide emissions in Pennsylvania declined by point 3 percent from 2004 to 2007. That's according to a new analysis of government data by the group PennEnvironment. Spokeswoman Erika Staaf says the drop is due to a combination of factors including a slowing economy and a shift to cleaner fuels. The report indicates that while emissions from most sectors fell or increased only slightly during that time period, electricity sector emissions continued to rise due primarily to generation from coal-fired plants.
Staaf says despite the decline, Pennsylvania is still ranked 3rd nationwide for the highest levels of global warming pollution. However, she admits that Pennsylvania is a power-producing state and one third of the electricity produced in Pennsylvania is exported to and consumed by other states but "we can drive Pennsylvania's economy without driving up pollution. By moving to clean energy, we can cut pollution, help jump-start the economy and create millions of new clean energy jobs."
Staaf says Pennsylvania has taken some important steps in recent years including adoption of a conservation standard to decrease demand from coal-fired plants, but state leaders should implement a climate action plan to cut pollution levels through a variety of clean energy solutions.
The report indicates that more than one third of the states cut pollution from 2004 to 2007.