Report: City Slickers Produce Less CO2
It’s what anti-sprawl folks and some urban planners have been saying for years! While cities may be hot spots for CO2 emissions, urban residents actually leave behind much smaller carbon footprints than their suburban counterparts. So says a new study released today by the Brookings Institution.
The study found that each resident of the largest 100 metro areas is responsible for 2.47 tons of CO2, which is 14 percent below the national average. It makes sense, right. Emissions per capita are lower because people who live in cities use public transportation and walk more than they drive, for example. This could be why some private developers are starting to consider transforming suburban wastelands into urban centers.
The study also found that east coast metro areas emit more CO2 than other cities. Why? Because coal is a major source of electricity. Plus, temperate weather in the West allows for lower energy consumption.
Overall, the largest 100 U.S. cities still account for 56 percent of the country’s CO2 emissions.