U.S. Energy Information Administration - EIA - Independent Statistics and Analysis
Frequently Asked Questions
How much carbon dioxide (CO2) is produced per kilowatthour when generating electricity with fossil fuels?
You can calculate the amount of CO2 produced per kilowatthour (kWh) for specific fuels and specific types of generators by multiplying the CO2 emissions factor for the fuel (in pounds of CO2 per million Btu) by the heat rate of a generator (in Btu per kWh generated), and dividing the result by 1,000,000.
For example, here are the number of pounds of CO2 produced by a steam-electric generator for different fuels using that formula and the average heat rates for steam-electric generators in 2012:
|Fuel||Lbs of CO2 per Million Btu||Heat Rate (Btu per kWh)||Lbs CO2 per kWh|
|Distillate Oil (No. 2)||161.386||10,416||1.68|
|Residual Oil (No. 6)||173.906||10,416||1.81|
Last updated: January 16, 2014
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