Natural gas largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Minneapolis for the first time

Significant reduction needed to meet 2025 and 2050 goals

Natural gas is now the largest contributor of greenhouse gas emissions in Minneapolis. Greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas increased 18% from 2017 to 2018 driven mainly by higher use in buildings. Electricity had been the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions until 2017, but people are using less electricity because of energy efficiency improvements at the same time more electricity is coming from cleaner, renewable sources. Although this resulted in a 41% decrease in electricity emissions alone since 2006, a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas is also imperative. A new report details the updates.

Meeting Minneapolis’ next goals to reduce its climate impact – a 30% reduction in citywide greenhouse gas emissions by 2025 and an 80 percent or more reduction by 2050 (all from a 2006 baseline) – will take significant reductions in natural gas emissions. This requires a two-pronged approach of conservation and gas alternatives: making buildings more energy efficient (for example, using increased energy efficient building codes, more insulation in existing buildings) and alternative technology to heat buildings such as ground-source and air-source heating pumps.

Increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere are destabilizing the earth’s climate, and human activity is the primary driver of these emissions. Without rapid action to reduce these emissions, threats are coming to our economic livelihood; public health; and supplies of food, fresh water and power.

The City’s continuing commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions

The City adopted goals in 2018 to achieve 100% renewable electricity for municipal facilities and operations by 2023 and communitywide by 2030. In 2019 the City adopted three new residential energy disclosure policies (Multifamily Residential Energy Benchmarking, Time of Rent Energy Disclosure and Time of Sale Energy Disclosure) with the goals of reducing carbon emissions and reducing long-term housing costs.

The City continues to collaborate with CenterPoint Energy and Xcel Energy via the Minneapolis Clean Energy Partnership to achieve the City’s energy and climate goals. Through the partnership, the City and utilities are creating new initiatives to help residents and businesses implement energy efficiency and clean energy projects.

 

Aug. 27, 2019

Published Aug 27, 2019

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