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Carbon dioxide emissions increased in 2014 for the second straight year as the economy improved, climbing 1 percent above 2013 levels.

The Energy Information Administration, the independent analysis arm of the Department of Energy, said 5.4 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide were put in the atmosphere in 2014.

The rise in emissions can be attributed to an increase in economic activity, the agency said. The country's gross domestic product grew 2.4 percent in 2014.

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