Lone Star State has largest carbon footprint

| 1/17/2008

When it comes to putting carbon into the air, Texas is the nation’s biggest polluter. And if it really was its own country, as the bumper stickers proclaim, it would have the seventh-largest carbon footprint in the world.

The Associated Press reported that U.S. Energy Department figures show the Lone Star State spewed 670 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in 2003, which is the most recent year they have records for.

California is the No. 2 carbon polluter and Pennsylvania is No. 3 out of the 50 states. But both states combined didn’t pollute as much as Texas did.

The federal report also stated that Texas, the second most populous state, behind California, has 23.5 million people and more than 20 million registered vehicles. About one in four of those vehicles is a pickup truck. California has a population of 36.5 million and 33 million registered vehicles.

The DOE reported that transportation accounted for 28 percent of Texas’ carbon emissions in 2003. In addition to all those vehicles, residents and businesses in Texas consume more coal than any other state. And its per-capita residential use of electricity is significantly higher than the national average.