For the first time as part of its annual inventory of pollution that cause global warming from stationary sources, the EPA included oil and natural- gas production. As a result, emissions from drilling, including fracking, and leaks from transmission pipes totaled 225 million metric tons of carbon-dioxide equivalents during 2011, second only to power plants, which emitted about 10 times that amount.
The EPA yesterday released details of emissions from about 8,000 factories, power plants and refineries. Will it surprise you to learn that the state with the greatest overall amount of emissions from power plants and refineries was Texas, with a total of 294 million metric tons. The next-highest state was Pennsylvania, with 129 million metric tons. Florida, Ohio and Indiana rounded out the top five. California ranked seventh, with 71 million metric tons of emissions. Idaho and Vermont had the lowest levels of reported emissions.
Ranked by facility, two coal-fired power facilities owned by Atlanta- based Southern Company topped the list, followed by the Martin Lake plant in East Texas owned by Energy Future Holdings Corp (TXU) of Dallas.
Overall, CO2 from power plants declined over 4% because there was less coal-burning and more gas-burning nationwide. But for areas where gas is mined, like the Barnett Shale in North Texas, GHG pollution is increasing substantially.