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Frequently Asked Questions

How much carbon dioxide is produced from U.S. gasoline and diesel fuel consumption?

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that in 2017, U.S. motor gasoline and diesel (distillate) fuel consumption in the U.S. transportation sector resulted in the emission of about 1,098 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) and 451 million metric tons of CO2, respectively, for a total of 1,549 million metric tons of CO2. This total was equal to 81% of total U.S. transportation sector CO2 emissions and equal to 30% of total U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions in 2017.1

Under international agreement, CO2 emissions from the combustion of biomass or biofuels are not included in national greenhouse gas emissions inventories.2 Therefore, estimates for the CO2 emissions that result from the consumption (combustion) of ethanol in gasoline and of biodiesel in diesel fuel are not included in EIA’s estimates of U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions.

1 Preliminary estimates as of December 2018.
2 Monthly Energy Review, Environment, Section note.

Learn more:
How do I convert between short tons and metric tons?
How much ethanol is in gasoline, and how does it affect fuel economy?
What are the greenhouse gas and air pollutant emissions factors for fuels and electricity?
Historical U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions by source (fuel type) and sector
Historical data on U.S. ethanol and biodiesel production and consumption (Tables 10.3 and 10.4)

Last updated: December 27, 2018


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