How Trump policy will affect US carbon emissions, in one graph

In Climate, News by

Vox looks at the Rhodium Group’s analysis of the U.S.’s emissions numbers and comes to some sobering conclusions.

America’s progress on carbon is set to stall.

… Here’s the money graph:

The blue shading represents uncertainties in the forecast. The dark blue uncertainty is around “LULUCF,” the elegant acronym for land use, land use change, and forests. Energy market uncertainty has to do with the price of oil, natural gas, and renewable energy. Economic uncertainty has to do with the overall rate of economic growth.

As you can see, there’s enough momentum built up — from cheap natural gas, federal renewable energy tax credits, fuel economy improvements, and various state and city policies — to hit the 2020 target (if not necessarily by 2020).

But after that, it’s a plateau. With the current policy regime, it will be impossible to hit the 2025 target. And the policy regime is likely to get worse before it gets better.