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U.S. Agency Projects 16% Carbon Increase Through 2040

The U.S. Energy Information Administration is projecting a 16% increase in greenhouse gas emissions from 2015 through 2040, with fossil fuel consumption growing enough to defeat the carbon reduction targets in the Paris agreement.

The report shows coal at a 20-year-long plateau, natural gas plentiful and growing, carbon-free wind and solar growing rapidly in percentage terms but not fast enough to bring emissions down in absolute terms, and petroleum holding its own as the main source of energy for transportation, despite the arrival of electric vehicles,” InsideClimate News reports.

The EIA’s business-as-usual scenario concludes that “with populations growing and developing nations getting richer, total energy consumption will keep climbing despite gains in energy efficiency,” ICN notes. “And with fossil fuels holding a 77% market share, greenhouse gas emissions will increase in lockstep.”

The Pulitzer-winning climate news outlet notes that “the EIA, despite being part of the U.S. Department of Energy, conducts its analyses without regard to the policy agenda of the administration that happens to be in office.” The report said the agency “tried to incorporate carbon reduction efforts in other countries”. But analysts concluded that “a great deal of uncertainty remains about the full implementation of policies to meet the stated goals, because most commitments have been made only through 2030, and it is uncertain how they will ultimately achieve these goals.”