Not easy to read this mixed message. While the overall trend is in the right direction, it looks like the US will not meet the emissions target set by President Obama for 2020. The more ambitious target for 2025 is not yet certainly out of reach.
I think there is consensus that it’s good for US GDP and population to grow, despite accompanying growth in energy use and carbon emissions. The US is challenged to grow while reducing the energy intensity related to each unit of growth, and further to reduce the carbon component of that reduced energy intensity.
I wonder how those challenges influence, or are influenced by, trends in inequality and free trade. I really wonder. A fair amount of carbon progress was made on the back of a great recession. What comes next?