From the AWEA blog:
Washington, D.C. — Today, EPA released
data showing that power plant carbon dioxide emissions declined 10%
between 2010-2012. During this period, U.S. wind energy production
increased 48%. The U.S. wind energy fleet is currently reducing carbon
dioxide emissions by nearly 100 million tons per year, or just under 5%
of total electric sector emissions in 2012.
Interestingly, preliminary Energy Information Administration (EIA) data for 2013
shows that some of the previous emissions reductions from switching
from coal to gas, which contributed to the reduction cited by EPA today,
have actually subsided. It finds electric sector CO2 emissions were up
about 2% for the first seven months of 2013, compared to the same period
While some of the emissions reductions noted by the EPA appear to be fleeting, the EIA data shows that wind energy is a key contributor in reducing emissions for the long-lasting.
As outlined in the table below, the increase so far in 2013 has been
driven by coal electricity generation increasing somewhat and gas
generation decreasing by a larger amount, attributable to natural gas
prices rebounding from the extreme lows set in 2012. Importantly, the
2013 emissions increase is much less than it would have been had total
fossil fuel generation not declined thanks to increased wind energy use.