EGrid Emission Factors: What Are They and Why They Matter

Have you ever wondered how much your everyday activities impact to the environment and contribute to climate change? Most people don’t, but the reality is that our contributions add up. In fact, this impact is measured through the “emissions factor,” which quantifies our contributions to greenhouse gas emissions. This blog post will tell you what eGRID emission factors are and why they matter.

Table of Contents

How eGRID Emission Factors Work

eGRID emission factors are used to calculate the emissions from a power plant. The factors take into account the type of fuel used, the efficiency of the plant, and the emissions released. The factors are used to estimate the emissions of carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxides.

What Types of Activities Contribute to eGRID Emissions?

The types of activities that contribute to eGRID emissions are those that generate electricity. This includes power plants that use fossil fuels such as coal and natural gas, as well as nuclear power plants.

Reducing Emissions from Grid-Connected Facilities

  • Pull eGRID data
  • Develop an analysis tool to help the industry reduce emissions
  • Develop an analysis tool to help the government reduce emissions
  • Develop an analysis tool to help utilities reduce emissions

Best Practices for Reducing Emissions

There are many ways to reduce emissions, but some best practices include:

  1. Reduce energy consumption: One of the best ways to reduce emissions is to simply use less energy. This can be done in several ways such as using energy-efficient appliances, insulation, weather-stripping your home, carpooling, taking public transportation instead of driving, and using less water.
  2. Generating renewable energy: Another great way to reduce emissions is to generate your own renewable energy. This can be done through solar panels, wind turbines, or other means.
  3. Planting trees: Trees absorb carbon dioxide, which helps to reduce emissions.
  4. Recycling: Recycling helps to reduce the need for new materials, which in turn reduces emissions.
  5. Composting: Composting helps to reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfills, where it emits methane gas.

What is The eGRID factor?

The eGRID factor is a number that represents the average emissions of a power plant. This number is used to compare the emissions of different power plants.

Where Can I Find Emission Factors?

The eGRID emission factors can be found on the website of the Environmental Protection Agency.

How often is eGRID updated?

The eGRID database is updated every four years with the most recent data from the previous year.

2019 eGRID Update

eGRID has released new emission factors for the year 2019!

Since many of you are eager to get updates, here are the updated Green-e residual mix emission factors.

One exciting update is that the 2019 Green-e data set includes a new eGRID region for Puerto Rico. Note that Green-e only calculates residual mix emission factors for CO2. The emission factors for CH4, N2O, and NOx come directly from eGRID and do not include market transactions.

In the absence of any known emissions of methane, nitrous oxide, and nitrogen oxide, the eGRID standard factors are used for the calculations.

Follow these steps to incorporate the updated factors into your SIMAP account:

  • Go to the Data Mgmt tab and select your eGRID region
  • Confirm that you are using Scope 2 market-based approach
  • Record the emission factors for your eGRID region
  • Go to the Data Entry tab > Utility emission factors page
  • Navigate to the appropriate source from the drop-down menu and enter your custom emission factors

GHG experts in the United States will continue to benefit from the eGRID database. However, the system is far from perfect.

A potential problem with eGRID is that some of the data isn’t current. This is because it’s published about two years after it’s collected.

These trends are one reason why a GHG manager may choose not to use eGRID in favor of a more involved but more accurate method.

While eGRID is specific to US states, there are similar emission reporting systems in other countries and organizations.


While eGRID emission factors are not perfect, they can give us a good idea of our relative contribution to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. By understanding our carbon footprint, we can make informed decisions about ways to reduce our emissions.

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