Background

New Jersey’s statewide greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions inventory is a critical tool for tracking progress in reducing GHG emissions. The GHG inventory establishes historical emission trends and demonstrates the state’s progress in achieving its emissions reduction goals, as required by New Jersey’s Global Warming Response Act (GWRA) (P.L. 2007 c.112; P.L. 2019 c.197) and Governor Phil Murphy’s Executive Order 274. The inventory includes estimates for carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), and fluorinated gases with high global warming potentials, along with estimates for black carbon and carbon sequestration.

The most recent GHG Inventory Report, published in 2022, extends emissions estimates to 2019 and includes recalculated emissions for 1990 and 2005 through 2018, applying updated data and methods of analysis.  Further, it includes a detailed analysis of emissions by sector, a review of greenhouse gas emissions trends and a discussion of the steps the state is taking to reduce its emissions. To see previous GHG Inventory Reports, and the detailed black carbon appendix for the latest GHG Inventory, visit the Inventory Archive.

Reporting Framework

Since 2008, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has released a comprehensive statewide GHG inventory report approximately every two years. Following the 2019 amendments to the GWRA, the DEP is also committed to releasing data annually to help inform the state’s climate mitigation planning and implementation efforts. The DEP will continue to release a full Emissions Inventory Report every other year and will also provide a “Mid-Cycle Update” during the intervening years. The Emissions Inventory Reports contain detailed analysis, including updated emissions calculations, review of GHG trends, adjustments to baselines (when necessary), and discussion of any changes in emission calculation methodologies. In contrast, the Mid-Cycle Update is a brief summary of the latest emissions data, with concise complementary analysis.

Data Overview

Statewide emission estimates rely on state, local, federal, and international data sources, and facility-specific emission reports from New Jersey’s emission statement program. The current inventory uses 100-year and 20-year global warming potential (GWP) values from the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report, consistent with international and national GHG Inventory practices. In preparation for each new edition of the inventory, recalculations are made to incorporate new methodologies, to reflect changes in data supplied by other agencies and to correct errors. Timeframes for obtaining data extend as long as two years after the end of a given calendar year. In order to provide timely support for mitigation of climate change, when final data is not available New Jersey develops projections based on reference reports and modeling tools provided by the federal government. Later, when final data becomes available, those projections are updated to incorporate the newly released information. Estimates for earlier years may also be revised should the originating source release adjusted figures.

NJ Greenhouse Gas Emissions, 2019

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Total Net Emissions, 98.5 million metric tons CO2e

NJ Greenhouse Gas Emissions, 2018

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Total Net Emissions, 101.8 million metric tons CO2e

NJ Greenhouse Gas Emissions, 2017

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Total Net Emissions, 96.6 million metric tons CO2e

NJ Greenhouse Gas Emissions, 2006

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Total Net Emissions, 121.1 million metric tons CO2e

NJ Greenhouse Gas Emissions, 1990

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Total Net Emissions, 111.4 million metric tons CO2e

NJ Historical Greenhouse Gas Emissions Years 1990, 2005-2019

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Black Carbon in NJ

The 2022 Greenhouse Gas Inventory report, summarizes the first comprehensive black carbon inventory for New Jersey, covering years 2005 through 2017.   The report found that substantial reductions in black carbon occurred between 2005 and 2017, led by decreases in the two largest sources, transportation, and non-road equipment.  The industrial, residential, and electric generation sectors also experienced declines, and the commercial sector (excluding non-road equipment such as forklifts) experienced a very small increase.

Below is historical and current data of Black Carbon (BC) in New Jersey, with a sector-specific emissions charts for the baseline year 2005 and most recent data year 2017. All CO2e data is based on GWP100.

To learn more about black carbon, visit the About GHGs page.

NJ Black Carbon Emissions, 2017

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Total Net Emissions, 2.29 million metric tons CO2e

NJ Black Carbon Emissions, 2005

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Total Net Emissions, 5.68 million metric tons CO2e

NJ Historical Black Carbon Emissions Years 2005-2017

(in million metric tons CO2e, GWP100)

Emissions Rates by State

New Jersey is a part of the Pennsylvania, Jersey, Maryland Power Pool (PJM), which is a regional transmission organization that coordinates the movement of wholesale electricity in New Jersey, along with Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.

The charts below provide a breakdown of emissions rates of carbon dioxide (CO2), sulfur dioxide (SO2), and nitrogen oxides (NOX) from electricity by state. Over the years, PJM states have acquired more efficient technologies and new supply resources including including cleaner, more efficient generators, renewables, demand response and energy efficiency, which have brought the annual emissions rates trending downward. From 2019 to 2020, the average emission rates for CO2, SO2, and NOX declined in the PJM footprint.

  • The carbon dioxide emission rate dropped 7%.
  • The nitrogen oxides emission rate dropped 20%.
  • The sulfur dioxide emission rate dropped nearly 22%.

The emissions rates for CO2, SO2, and NOX, measured in pound per megawatt hour (lb/MWh), of all states for the year 2020 are displayed below. The PJM states are identified as dark blue.

Sources of SO2 Emission Rate (lb/MWh)

SO2 Emission Rate(lb/MWh)

Sources of NOX Emission Rate (lb/MWh)

NOx Emission Rate(lb/MWh)

Sources of CO2 Emission Rate (lb/MWh)

CO2 Emission Rate(lb/MWh)

National and Global Trends

New Jersey’s climate mitigation efforts are only one part of the world-wide response to global warming.  Placed in context, New Jersey is responsible for 1.6% of national emissions and 0.3% of worldwide emissions. On a per capita basis, New Jersey in-state emissions ranged between 11 and 12 metric tons CO2e per resident between 2016 and 2019. This was slightly more than half the national average of 20 metric tons per resident, and about double the international average of 5 metric tons per resident.

It should be noted that per capita emissions are based on production-based inventories and are not a reflection of consumption of goods services and energy in New Jersey.

Gross Emissions

(MMT CO2e, GWP100)

New Jersey Gross Emissions as Percent of U.S. and World, 2019

Emissions per Capita

(MT CO2e/person)