Greenhouse gas emissions down

6th February 2017 | Commercial Energy

UK greenhouse gas emissions fell nearly four per cent last year. This continues a long-running trend that has seen the country’s emissions drop 38 per cent since 1990. The latest official statistical release from National Statistics shows total greenhouse gas emissions in 2015 reach 495.7 million tonnes of carbon equivalent (MtCO2e). This is a fall of 3.8 per cent on 2014 levels.

The performance puts the UK comfortably on track to meet the legally-binding second carbon budget period, which runs through to 2017. National Statistics said every year since 2013 has resulted in emissions well below the average emissions level. This is dictated by the annual budget of 556.4 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.


The latest report credits the strong performance in 2015 on significant progress form the energy, business, and waste management sectors. All of these delivered sizeable reductions in emissions.

The report said emissions from the energy sector were down 12.3 per cent in 2015 to 20,1 MtCO2e thanks to “a large decrease in power station emissions due to a change in the fuel mix for electricity generation, with a decrease in the use of coal and ore use of nuclear and renewables.” The trend is expected to have continued during 2016, as the energy sector set a series of new records for renewables output and low levels of coal use throughout the year.

The report confirms emissions from the business sector fell 2.6 per cent in 2015. This is largely due to a reduction in emissions from fuel used in the iron and steel sector caused by the closure of one of the UK’s three integrated steelworks. Emission from the waste management sector fell 7.1 per cent due to decreased emissions from landfill.

The results continue an impressive trend for the green economy. This as seen emissions from the energy sector plummet 48 per cent since 1990, which emissions from waste have fallen 73 per cent. Emissions from business have dropped by more than a quarter against the same baseline.

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