JUNEAU, Alaska — Alaska has the fourth-highest per capita greenhouse gas emissions in the country, according to a state Department of Environmental Conservation report.
The findings released on Tuesday show only West Virginia, North Dakota and Wyoming have higher per-capita emissions, the Juneau Empire reported .
The report did, however, note that Alaska has made strides in emission practices.
Human-caused greenhouse gas emissions in the state have decreased by 8 percent since 1990, according to the report. And Alaska is 40th out of all 50 states and Washington, D.C., for total greenhouse gas emissions.
“One of the really significant findings in some ways was the stability that we’re seeing in this report,” said Denise Koch, director of the Division of Air Quality. “The major emitters are the same, those patterns haven’t changed.”
In 2014, Alaskans contributed roughly 35 million metric tons of carbon and carbon equivalent. Thirty-nine states had higher overall greenhouse gas emissions, with Texas being the highest at almost 650 million metric tons and D.C. the lowest with just a few metric tons.
Each of the states that came in higher in per-capita emissions has a population below 2 million and comparably large amounts of industry.
Alaska’s emissions are a small part of the U.S.’s overall, making up 0.63 percent of total U.S. human-caused emissions.
The updated report, which adds data from 2011-2015 to a report from 1990-2010, will inform Gov. Bill Walker’s new Climate Action Leadership team, Koch said.
Information from: Juneau (Alaska) Empire, http://www.juneauempire.com