Knowing which states have the highest levels of harmful carbon emissions is one of the first steps in taking steps to help reverse it. Although greenhouse gas emissions cannot be stopped overnight, we can do a lot as a nation to make the switch to cleaner energy.
If all harmful emissions were to stop, the Earth’s temperature would still continue to rise for decades because heat is stored deep in the oceans and is radiated out into space. Scientists have said however, that once all of this excess heat was released, the earth’s atmosphere would begin to stabilize. The earth will never get back to pre-industrial emission levels, it is just not possible with all of the agriculture, power plants, logging and gas-powered transportation we use. That doesn’t mean that all efforts in helping our situation are futile. We can still take steps to slow or reduce global warming in the US.
Looking at this map from Solar Power Guide which ranks U.S. states by carbon dioxide emissions, we can see which states need the most help.
Wyoming with its population of 579,994 has over 104 metric tons of annual CO2 emissions per capita. Texas also tops this list as the US state with the greatest total annual CO2 emissions overall, and by a lot. Over 706 million metric tons, the 2nd state to that is California and they have 358.6 million metric tons. That is quite a large gap. Florida, Louisiana, Pennsylvania and Ohio are also some of the states with the highest levels of harmful CO2 emissions. On the opposite end the state with the lowest CO2 emissions is Vermont with only 5.8 million metric tons per year. Rhode Island, Delaware, New Hampshire and South Dakota are also all on the list of states with the least total annual CO2 emissions.
How does your state rank on this list?