By Brendon Durr
The Houston Chronicle, Mar. 7, 2022
Within Houston city limits, traffic is the predominant source of greenhouse gas emissions. But data submitted by facilities such as power plants, refineries, chemical plants and other similar industries that are required to report emissions to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) across Harris County shows a very different story.
Harris County has one of the largest sources of stationary CO2e emissions in the state. The Exxon Mobil refinery at Baytown, the third-largest refinery in the U.S. and fifth-highest emitter in Texas, is beaten only by a handful of coal-powered plants.
Nearly 12 million metric tons of CO2e came out of the Baytown refinery in 2021. For comparison, emissions from all of Houston city traffic tallied just under 17 million metric tons that year.
Harris County has 102 facilities required to report this data to the EPA, 14 of which produce more than 1 million metric tons of CO2e annually. Texas is home to 1,862 facilities, 18 percent of the 8,000 U.S. facilities that report each year and more than three times as many facilities as any other state.
EPA’s facility-level greenhouse gas emissions data show where the biggest stationary sources of CO2e are in Texas, and which ones are failing to report. The data includes power plants, fuel and gas suppliers and CO2 injection sites. It also covers other heavy industrial facilities that produce more than 25,000 metric tons of CO2e a year, though some sectors are required to report emissions regardless.
The Exxon Mobil Baytown complex, of which the refinery is one part, sits on 3,400 acres along the Houston Ship Channel. It processes roughly 584,000 barrels of crude oil a day and has emitted almost three times the CO2e of any other source in Harris County since 2013.
Read the full article on The Houston Chronicle.