Chapter 3, Key Finding 1

In 2013, primary energy use in North America exceeded 125 exajoules,1 of which Canada was responsible for 11.9%, Mexico 6.5%, and the United States 81.6%. Of total primary energy sources, approximately 81% was from fossil fuels, which contributed to carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e)2 emissions levels, exceeding 1.76 petagrams of carbon, or about 20% of the global total for energy-related activities. Of these emissions, coal accounted for 28%, oil 44%, and natural gas 28% (very high confidence, likely).

1 One exajoule is equal to one quintillion (1018) joules, a derived unit of energy in the International System of Units.
2 Carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e): Amount of CO2 that would produce the same effect on the radiative balance of Earth’s climate system as another greenhouse gas, such as methane (CH4) or nitrous oxide (N2O), on a 100-year timescale. For comparison to units of carbon, each kg CO2e is equivalent to 0.273 kg C (0.273 = 13.67). See Box P.2 in the Preface for more details.