Quantcast

4 Sources of Carbon Pollution That Would Dramatically Alter World's Climate

Climate

A new report, Dirty Fuels, Clean Futures, released today by the Sierra Club reveals four major potential sources of carbon pollution that, if developed, could dramatically alter the world's climate. Data shows that the oil, gas and coal from these potential sources, including the Arctic Ocean, Green River Formation, Powder River Basin and the Monterey, San Juan Basin and Marcellus shale plays, have the potential to release billions of tons of new carbon pollution into the atmosphere, more than negating positive climate actions taken by the Obama Administration.

Graphic courtesy of Sierra Club's Our Wild America campaign

"We can't keep burning fossil fuels and reduce climate pollution at the same time. It's common sense." said Michael Brune, Sierra Club Executive Director. "As this report demonstrates, real progress to fight climate disruption requires that dirty fuels be kept in the ground."

As the report details, developing just a fraction of the dirty energy in these major climate disrupters would cancel out the U.S.' greatest accomplishments in the fight against climate disruption—efforts like the Obama Administration's new fuel economy standards. Developing just one of these climate disrupters—the Arctic Ocean, for example would result in two-and-a-half times more pollution than would be saved by the new fuel economy standards.

Already, through administrative actions and by doubling down on clean energy, the Obama Administration has done more than any other to reduce carbon pollution. For the first time in 20 years, domestic carbon dioxide emissions are decreasing. An effective climate strategy however, requires that these steps be accompanied by efforts to leave dirty fuels in the ground. Several such pragmatic steps are outlined in the report.

The report calls on the Obama Administration to consider climate pollution, like other dangerous air and water pollution, before dirty energy projects move forward. It asks the President to close loopholes that allow the fossil fuel industry to benefit at the cost of Americans' health, environment and future; and it stresses that new energy projects and leasing should be focused on clean, not dirty, energy.

"Whether they are found beneath our public lands or next to our homes and schools, dirty fuels must be kept in the ground," said Dan Chu, senior director of the Sierra Club's Our Wild America campaign. "We should be taking advantage of available clean energy options that will create jobs, protect public health and fight climate disruption."

--------

YOU ALSO MIGHT LIKE

100+ Scientists and Economists Urge President Obama and Secretary Kerry to Reject Keystone XL 

Watch Full First Episode of 'Years of Living Dangerously,' Showtime's Landmark Series on Climate Change

Tech Industry Can Ignite A Clean Energy Revolution  

--------

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A Starbucks barista prepares a drink at a Starbucks Coffee Shop location in New York. Ramin Talaie / Corbis via Getty Images

By Cathy Cassata

Are you getting your fill of Starbucks' new Almondmilk Honey Flat White, Oatmilk Honey Latte, and Coconutmilk Latte, but wondering just how healthy they are?

Read More
Radiation warning sign at the Union Carbide uranium mill in Rifle, Colorado, in 1972. Credit: National Archives / Environmental Protection Agency, public domain

By Sharon Kelly

Back in April last year, the Trump administration's Environmental Protection Agency decided it was "not necessary" to update the rules for toxic waste from oil and gas wells. Torrents of wastewater flow daily from the nation's 1.5 million active oil and gas wells and the agency's own research has warned it may pose risks to the country's drinking water supplies.

Read More
Sponsored
Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg takes part in a "Friday for Future" youth demonstration in a street of Davos on Jan. 24, 2020 on the sideline of the World Economic Forum annual meeting. FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP via Getty Images

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin pretended not to know who Greta Thunberg is, and then he told her to get a degree in economics before giving world leaders advice, as The Guardian reported.

Read More
The Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite on the Suomi NPP satellite acquired this image of forest fire smoke hovering over North America on Aug. 15, 2018. NASA Earth Observatory

New York City isn't known for having the cleanest air, but researchers traced recent air pollution spikes there to two surprising sources — fires hundreds of miles away in Canada and the southeastern U.S.

Read More
If temperatures continue to rise, the world is at risk from global sea-level rise, which will flood many coastal cities as seen above in Bangladesh. NurPhoto / Contributor / Getty Images

The mounting climate emergency may spur the next global financial crisis and the world's central banks are woefully ill equipped to handle the consequences, according to a new book-length report by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), as S&P Global reported. Located in Basel, Switzerland, the BIS is an umbrella organization for the world's central banks.

Read More