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EU GHG Emissions Stats

March 16, 2016

By Paul Homewood


Under the Paris Climate Treaty, the EU has committed to reduce emissions of GHG by 40% from 1990 levels by 2030.

Let’s tale a look at progress so far. The latest available numbers from Eurostat are for 2012:




Greenhouse gas emissions in the EU- 28 (including international aviation but excluding LULUCF), stood at 4 682.9 million tonnes of CO2-equivalents in 2012. This figure marked an overall reduction of 17.9 % when compared with 1990, or some 1 019 million tonnes of CO2 -equivalents.

A sharp drop in the early 1990s is evident, and an even bigger one during the 2008 recession.


But what is much more interesting is the national split:




The countries which have made the biggest cuts are all ex Soviet Bloc states, where the closure of old, obsolete heavy industry in the early 1990s led to big cuts in emissions. For instance, emissions in the Czech Republic dropped by 24% between 1990 and 1994.

Amongst the original EU-15, the three biggest cutters have been the UK, Germany and Denmark, all at very similar levels.  


The latest figures from DECC show that emissions in the UK have continued to drop at a fast rate. Including LULUCF, as required under the Paris Treaty, provisional figures for last year suggest a cut of 32%.


We often hear that the UK is lagging behind the rest of Europe in cutting emissions, but the reverse is actually true.

  1. Mickey permalink
    March 16, 2016 5:56 pm

    Am I correct that the release of GHG from burning biofuels is not included in the totals?

  2. March 16, 2016 6:13 pm

    How are these data collected? For instance, when a helicopter services a wind turbine, how are its GHG emissions accounted for? I presume gasoline sales are included.

    • March 16, 2016 10:44 pm

      Dead right

      It is measured from source, so oil is measured as oil, regardless of what it is used for

      • CheshireRed permalink
        March 17, 2016 9:27 am

        Lies, damned lies and statistics. Those who want these figures will present them as favourably to their cause as they can do, and in a few years we’ll see a ‘recalculation’ that reveals the whole lot was misleading and not worth the recycled paper it was printed on.

  3. Broadlands permalink
    March 16, 2016 6:49 pm

    It is interesting that globally the RATE of population growth peaked in 1987 when CO2 was at the “safe” 350 ppm and population was five billion. But the per capita emissions increase started a continuous rise beginning in 1999 when population reached six billion and CO2 reached 368 ppm. We are now seven billion and CO2 is 400 ppm. Progress will be slow, if at all, as the number of “carbon feet” continues to rise.

    Not a lot of people know that?

  4. March 16, 2016 7:50 pm

    Greenies are keeping quiet about the measured CO2, which continues to rise, they don’t want people to realise the failure of plastering the countryside with wind turbines:

    but of course they are very keen to claim progress on emissions, as David Cameron did today in Parliament, confusing CO2 with respiratory air pollution.

  5. Adam Gallon permalink
    March 16, 2016 9:59 pm

    The Germans fiddled their figures, using pre-unification levels as their baseline. So when all the dirty, inefficient DDR factories etc shut, instant “Karbon Karma”!

  6. March 16, 2016 10:47 pm

    Is the UK transitioning away from CO2 producing industries to activities that involve less emissions as did the Eastern Bloc? Are you, like the Americans relying on China to do the dirty work.

  7. Richard111 permalink
    March 17, 2016 7:54 am

    And GHG emissions from China, India and Africa? How are they factored into global totals?
    Even if the West commits economic suicide global GHG emissions will not reduce.
    Not that CO2 has anything to do with climate, local or global. Can’t understand how this farce is being maintained or for what ultimate purpose.

    • David Richardson permalink
      March 17, 2016 2:50 pm

      Control is the game with a World government – UN Agenda 21 which filters to the UK through the EU.

      They are not worried about the climate, never have been, its only the foot soldiers who care about that.

      Once again I recommend Rupert Darwall’s “The Age of Global Warming : A history”. You will only learn a little about the science, but you will learn all there is to know about the environmental politics of the last 50 years. Well documented and bibliographed.

  8. March 18, 2016 12:08 pm

    Again, let me reiterate, “greenhouse gases” are only found within the confines of a greenhouse. We are dealing with perfectly natural “atmospheric gases.”

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