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EU GHG emissions fall

EU GHG emissions fall 1 June 2021

Major drop in EU’s greenhouse gas emissions in 2019, official data confirms (via EEA)

Greenhouse gas emissions in the European Union (EU) decreased by almost 4% in 2019, according to latest official data, published today by the European Environment Agency (EEA). These data confirm the EEA’s preliminary estimates, published in October 2020. The large decline in emissions, achieved before the COVID–19 crisis, was mainly due to reduced coal use for power generation.

The official data, submitted on behalf of the EU to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), show that EU Member States managed to reduce collectively their emissions by 3.8 % from 2018 to 2019. This decrease brought EU emissions to 24.0 % below 1990 levels, not accounting for carbon dioxide removals from land use, land–use change and forestry (LULUCF) activities. When these removals are included, the overall reduction from 1990 to 2019 amounts to 25.9%.

Almost 80 % of the net reduction in emissions achieved in 2019 took place in the heat and power sector, which is covered by the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS). Increasing carbon prices and gas becoming relatively cheaper compared with coal led to a significant reduction in coal use, in favour of gas and renewable energy sources.

Read the full story here.