The only practical way to lower global CO2 emissions is to encourage innovation that could make low-carbon energy cheap for everyone. Policies like the Green New Deal and the Biden Plan that would outlaw American fossil fuel use won’t stop global CO2 emissions from rising--but they will ruin America.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration in its reference case projects an overall increase of CO2 emissions for the world while America continues to reduce emissions slightly. As of 2017 US CO2 emissions were less than 15% of the global total. U.S. EIA International Energy Outlook 2019 reference case↩
The largest increase in energy consumption is projected to come from non-OECD countries, but this might be underestimating future growth potential for the poorest regions in Africa.↩
Nuclear energy is statistically the safest form of energy production by a wide margin, regardless of whether one takes into account speculative health impacts from air pollution, which nuclear technology does not create. No other relevant technologies cause so few casualties per unit of energy produced.↩
“Between 2005 and 2018, EIA has calculated that cumulative U.S. CO2 emissions reductions attributable specifically to shifts from coal to natural gas and to non-carbon generation totaled 4,621 MMmt (see methodology on page 19). Of this total, 2,823 MMmt resulted from decreased use of coal and increased use of natural gas. 1,799 MMmt resulted from decreased use of coal and increased use of non-carbon generation sources.” - U.S. Energy Information Administration - U.S. Energy-Related Carbon Dioxide Emissions, 2018↩
In a Democratic primary debate in March 2020 Joe Biden agreed to a radical “no new fracking” policy to attract Democratic voters. While most of the US unconventional oil and gas operations take place on private lands, even a federal policy banning new development would be a substantial hit on domestic energy production.
Joe Biden’s energy plan also calls for a net-zero CO2 emissions economy wide by no later than 2050. His climate plan also promises aggressive new methane emission limits. Effectively, this amounts to a ban and early retirement of coal, gas, and oil for electricity generation (over 60% of the current total), as there is no cost-effective technology available to capture CO2 from fuel combustion, even though Biden tried to backpedal on the direct attacks against fracking recently.↩