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What Lessons Can We Learn From Drops In Greenhouse Gas Emissions During Pandemic Lockdowns?

Sustainability coverage is supported in part by Intel

Fewer greenhouse gasses were emitted globally over the last year, as people drove and flew less during pandemic-related lockdowns.

But new research suggests scientists may have underestimated just how big of a drop there was.

Kevin Gurney is a professor in the School of Informatics, Computing and Cyber Systems at Northern Arizona University, where he works on the quantification of greenhouse gas emissions.

His team found that during one week in April of last year, which coincided with many states’ lockdown orders, the U.S. saw a decline in carbon dioxide emissions of more than 19%. 

The Show spoke with him about the bigger-than-previously-thought drops.

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Mark Brodie is a co-host of The Show, KJZZ’s locally produced news magazine. Since starting at KJZZ in 2002, Brodie has been a host, reporter and producer, including several years covering the Arizona Legislature, based at the Capitol.