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 ...
  • 579
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-...
  • 377
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 ...
  • 2,774
10 votes

Are my compost piles adding CO2 to the atmosphere by offgassing?

It is. However, the aerobic process of composting produces CO2, which is better than the anaerobic processes which result from burying compostable materials under layers of sand (preventing access to ...
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 ...
  • 11.5k
7 votes
Accepted

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 ...
  • 11.5k
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....
  • 579
6 votes
Accepted

How much CO2 do those gas flame pits outside restaurants emit?

Taking this video as a reference (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VYZKGlxutfw), a 20 lb (I take that as 10 kg) tank as in your burner lasts for 6 to 12 hours. So roughly 1 kg per hour. Assuming pure ...
  • 176
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 ...
  • 14.3k
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 ...
  • 11.5k
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, ...
  • 1,001
6 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 ...
  • 3,992
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 ...
  • 2,774
5 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 ...
  • 336
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 ...
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 ...
  • 11.5k
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 ...
  • 14.3k
4 votes
Accepted

What is meant by Global-warming Potential (GWP)?

It's a cosmetic issue. They're just using the language in an idiosyncratic way. What this particular document means by "GWP" on page 24 is simply the amount of CO2-equivalent emissions. Normally ...
  • 14.7k
4 votes

How much CO2 do those gas flame pits outside restaurants emit?

Working from @Christoph's answer, here's what I get: Baseline heat emission is 264,000 BTU/hour (at full blast) 43,700 BTU in a kilogram of propane, so that's 6 kg/hour 6 kg of propane contains 6 x ...
4 votes
Accepted

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 ...
  • 3,992
3 votes

Are my compost piles adding CO2 to the atmosphere by offgassing?

Short answer: yes they do. It's completely natural that decomposing organic materials release CO2 and other greenhouse gases like methane and nitrogen oxides in some quantities. Both during ...
  • 476
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 ...
  • 11.5k
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. ...
  • 14.3k
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 ...
  • 14.7k
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’...
  • 11.5k
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 ...
  • 377
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 ...
  • 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 ...
  • 3,362
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 ...
  • 3,992

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible