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18 votes

Is driving an electric car any better than driving a conventional car if electricity is generated with fossil fuel?

Yes. The hard limit on the efficiency of a heat engine is the Carnot efficiency: the amount of usable energy extracted from a heat source is limited by the temperature of the heat source and the ...
Mark's user avatar
  • 618
13 votes

Is driving an electric car any better than driving a conventional car if electricity is generated with fossil fuel?

Volvo have done an interesting study on this recently, looking at whole-lifecycle emissions for a BEV (battery electric vehicle) XC40 versus a ICE (internal combusion engine) XC40. A vehicle life-...
John M's user avatar
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10 votes
Accepted

Is burning wood the same as letting it biodegrade from a CO2 emissions perspective?

Conservation It is a fundamental law of physics that matter/mass/energy (all being, ultimately, the same thing) cannot be created or destroyed — they just change form. Under 'normal' conditions on ...
Tim's user avatar
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9 votes
Accepted

How much could the US reduce its electricity demand if people moved from Texas back to Ohio?

Original answer (which had a long explanation): I proposed using degree days information to determine a baseload value for consumption of electricity and natural gas by region, and assume anything ...
LShaver's user avatar
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7 votes
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Which materials dumped into landfills are the largest sources of methane?

The source of methane -- degradable organic carbon A 2006 report by the IPCC, Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories, Volume 5 -- Waste, includes six different categories of landfilled ...
LShaver's user avatar
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7 votes
Accepted

Does 1 container ship really pollute as much as 50,000,000 cars?

It depends on how you define "pollution". Cargo ships use some of the dirtiest fuels available: bunker fuel is basically what's left over after you refine all the good stuff out of crude oil....
Mark's user avatar
  • 618
7 votes

Is a fish based diet most sustainable?

Greenhouse gases aren't the only consideration. A problem is the sustainability of fishing. Are the fished species in danger of extinction? Do the fish or fishing have extinction-causing effects on ...
juhist's user avatar
  • 5,099
6 votes

Plane and train greenhouse emissions - comparison taking infrastructure in account or not?

Cars, buses, trains, and planes: comparison including infrastructure "Life-cycle Environmental Inventory of Passenger Transportation in the United States", a 2008 PhD dissertation, provides a ...
LShaver's user avatar
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6 votes

Emissions offsets versus avoidance: can they be compared?

There is a saying in the sustainability world; "Reduce what you can, offset what you can't". If you burn fossil fuels, you are adding CO2 to the atmosphere. While it is possible to reduce ...
THelper's user avatar
  • 14.5k
6 votes

Which countries, regions, or cities have set a date to ban the sale of gasoline and diesel vehicles?

The best list is probably wikipedia: Phase-out of fossil fuel vehicles There is a good review from the World Economic Forum here, dated 2017, which discusses some of the different approaches taken, ...
M Juckes's user avatar
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6 votes

GHG-wise sustainability of our daily caffeine-dose

There is an analysis of the carbon footprint of coffee here with a less academic write up here by Professor Mark Maslin and PhD student Carmen Nab (both University College London, Geography). The ...
User65535's user avatar
  • 386
5 votes

With current technology, how much CO2 is emitted when making renewable power plants?

Since raw materials scale according to size, every different panel/turbine will have a different answer. Different generators also have different maintenance costs, and lifespans. It's probably more ...
Tim's user avatar
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5 votes
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Is driving an electric car any better than driving a conventional car if electricity is generated with fossil fuel?

Oh yes it is. The fossil fuel of choice in electricity generation today is natural gas. Natural gas combined cycle turbines run at 50% efficiency. Compare that to the 25% average efficiency of a car ...
juhist's user avatar
  • 5,099
4 votes

What information is lost when converting other air pollution into CO2e?

Time span. Most of the others are short term. CO2 ultimately depends on the rate biomass increases, and the speed it mixes into the deep ocean. Processes that take very long periods (thousands of ...
Sherwood Botsford's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

What has been the greenhouse gas impact of shutting down Japanese nuclear power plants post-Fukushima?

Change in capacity From 2004 to 2014, nuclear capacity did not change substantially: Change in generation However, the generation mix did change quite a bit (2014 nuclear data not available, so ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
4 votes

How much CO2 do I cause with one Google search?

As LShaver and Gerrit also mentioned in their comments, an exact answer would depend on the scope and method of calculation. You've already mentioned you are only interested in the search itself so I ...
THelper's user avatar
  • 14.5k
3 votes

Why is the per capita CO2 emissions so much higher in Wyoming than in the Northeast?

tl;dr - Comparing Wyoming to, say, New York, the largest source of CO2 emissions in both states is the power sector. Wyoming uses mostly coal for power, which emits more CO2 per kWh generated than any ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
3 votes

How much increase in GHG emissions is caused by Amazon Prime?

I looked into a similar question 2 years ago and came to the conclusion that it's impossible to answer this. The problem is that Amazon doesn't disclose any information about their carbon footprint. ...
THelper's user avatar
  • 14.5k
3 votes

What is the average CO2 emission for a human while debating?

I think you've misunderstood the CO2 issue. The problem with greenhouse gases, the way in which they present a threat to the very existence of human civilisations, is because we are adding C/CO2 to ...
410 gone's user avatar
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3 votes
Accepted

Can Siberia's greenhouse gas be harvested?

Extracting natural gas from pingos is likely not cost-effective. From the article cited in the question: A count of 7,000 pingos, alternative included, was likely an underestimate, in Romanovsky’...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
3 votes

How much methane is leaked for each kWh delivered to my home?

I don't have any data for your area but this research from the University of Oxford suggests leakage of 0.39Mt of methane annually from gas mains in the UK. (By way of comparison, agriculture produces ...
John M's user avatar
  • 387
3 votes

Is driving an electric car any better than driving a conventional car if electricity is generated with fossil fuel?

Renewable diesel is a Co2 neutral product that is a direct replacement for hydrocarbon diesel in the diesel fleet. https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/biofuels/biodiesel-in-depth.php This fuel is ...
Tom's user avatar
  • 31
3 votes
Accepted

Cost analysis of changing cow diet to lower methane emissions

A number of sources claim that adding seaweed to the diet of cattle can reduce methane emissions from cattle by 70 to 86 percent. Cows fed small amount of seaweed burp 86 per cent less methane in ...
Fred's user avatar
  • 3,507
3 votes

GHG-wise sustainability of our daily caffeine-dose

Depending on your location, you can grow your own caffeine! Camellia sinensis sitka is a hardy variety of the common tea plant. It does well to Zone 8, or even colder, if you can put it in a protected ...
Jan Steinman's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

What is the climate change impact of releasing one tonne of methane in the atmosphere vs. the impact of burning it?

That's easy. Methane molecule is 16.042 grams and carbon dioxide molecule is 44.01 grams. Burning methane produces one carbon dioxide molecule per one methane molecule. If you burn 16.042 grams of ...
juhist's user avatar
  • 5,099
2 votes

Is burning wood the same as letting it biodegrade from a CO2 emissions perspective?

Yes and no. The answer to the question you asked is yes. Biodegradation produces carbon dioxide and heat. The heat of biodegradation will be wasted. It makes much more sense to usefully harvest the ...
juhist's user avatar
  • 5,099
2 votes

Is burning wood the same as letting it biodegrade from a CO2 emissions perspective?

The simple answer is that burning it would be roughly carbon neutral (it releases what it absorbed during growth) versus letting it decompose where it would be a carbon sink. Fossil fuels in the ...
FreeText's user avatar
  • 269
2 votes
Accepted

Shortcut carbon emission trading by buying and sinking coal

"Obviously, it would be most ecologic to leave the coal where it is. But since this does not happen..." Actually, there are some who would like to buy the coal in the ground and leave it ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
2 votes
Accepted

Which climate change mitigations take longer than 12 years to see a net benefit?

Almost all of the well-known mitigation tools yield fast benefits. PV's payback is around a year. Onshore wind around 3 months, offshore wind around 9 months. The payback time on each of these three ...
410 gone's user avatar
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