Hayward’s Emissions Increasing Post-Pandemic

September 26, 2023

After a steep decline in emissions from 2019 to 2020, Hayward saw an increase in emissions as the City recovers from the pandemic. According to Hayward’s 2021 greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory, published earlier this month, Hayward achieved a 37.4% reduction in overall GHG emissions compared to 2005 levels.

As transportation patterns began to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2021, Hayward experienced a 15.5% increase in vehicle miles traveled and a 11.9% increase in overall transportation emissions from 2020 to 2021. The overall transportation emission percent increase is lower despite the percent increase in vehicle miles traveled due to an increase in gasoline car fuel efficiency and increase of electric vehicles on the road. Based on DMV data, electric vehicles now make up 4.2% of the total vehicle miles traveled in Hayward. 

2021 energy emissions (electricity and natural gas) decreased to a total of 45.5% below 2005 levels despite increases in emissions attributed to East Bay Community Energy’s Bright Choice product becoming increasingly dirtier, servicing about 30% of Hayward customers. Around 70% of Hayward customers remain on the 100% carbon-free product, Renewable 100, provided by East Bay Community Energy.

As we return to pre-pandemic activity levels, community-wide consciousness will be critical to ensure the City stays on course to achieve Hayward’s future goal of a 55% emission reduction by 2030. To learn how you can support these goals by cutting your own carbon footprint, view this helpful resource on the Environmental Protection Agency’s website.