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U.S. carbon emissions from energy dropped another 1.7 percent in 2016, largely because natural gas and renewables are displacing coal in power production, data from the federal Energy Information Administration shows.

Why it matters: It's a clear signal that President Trump's effort to revive the coal industry's fortunes by cutting regulation is an uphill battle against underlying market trends.

Expand chart
Data: Energy Information Administration; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios
  • Total CO2 emissions are around 14 percent below 2005 levels, putting the U.S. roughly halfway toward meeting its pledge under the Paris climate accord to cut emissions by 26-28 percent by 2025.
  • The emissions drop last year was smaller than the 2.7 percent decline between 2014 and 2015. Energy accounts for nearly all U.S. carbon emissions.

To be sure: Not everything is trending downward. Emissions from transportation rose by almost 2 percent last year as vehicle travel increased amid low gasoline prices. Transportation overtook the electricity sector as the largest U.S. carbon emissions source in 2016, according to EIA.

Go deeper

Biden explains justification for Syria strike in letter to Congress

Photo: Chris Kleponis/CNP/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden told congressional leadership in a letter Saturday that this week's airstrike against facilities in Syria linked to Iranian-backed militia groups was consistent with the U.S. right to self-defense.

Why it matters: Some Democrats, including Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), have criticized the Biden administration for the strike and demanded a briefing.

8 hours ago - Health

FDA authorizes Johnson & Johnson's one-shot COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

Photo: Illustration by Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration on Saturday issued an emergency use authorization for Johnson & Johnson's one-shot coronavirus vaccine.

Why it matters: The authorization of a third coronavirus vaccine in the U.S. will help speed up the vaccine rollout across the country, especially since the J&J shot only requires one dose as opposed to Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech's two-shot vaccines.

Updated 8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios