In 2007, greenhouse gas emissions in the Netherlands were reduced for the third consecutive year. The total emission volume amounted to 205 billion kg of CO2 equivalents, i.e. 4 percent below the level of 1990, the base year of the Kyoto Protocol. This is borne out by calculations conducted by Statistics Netherlands and the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency.
According to the Kyoto Protocol, the Netherlands must have reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 6 percent annually over the period 2008–2012 relative to the base year. Part of the reduction may be realised abroad. The Dutch government can buy emission rights in other countries or finance environmental projects abroad which earn greenhouse gas emission reductions.
The emission volume in the base year is set att 213 billion kg of CO2 equivalents. In 2005, the overall emission volume in the Netherlands dropped under this level for the first time. In the years that followed, the reduction continued.
Greenhouse gas emissions
Reduction nitrous oxide emissions
The reduction by approximately 2 billion kg of CO2 equivalents in 2007 is mainly due to a reduction in the emission of nitrous oxide (N2O) realised by nitric acid plants. The volume of methane emissions from landfill sites also diminished.
Carbon dioxide emissions stable
The volume of carbon dioxide emissions (172 billion kg) remained unchanged in 2007. An increase in carbon dioxide emissions occurred in the electricity generation process. Electricity consumption increased by 1 percent and at the same time imports declined by 18 percent. Last year, power stations generated 5 percent more electricity to meet the demand. This resulted in an increase in CO2 emissions by more than 3 billion kg.
Carbon dioxide emissions per sector
This increase is offset by a decrease in CO2 emissions by more than 1.5 billion kg because the volume of natural gas consumption fell due to the mild weather conditions in the winter of 2007, improved insulation methods and an increase in the number of high efficiency boilers in private dwellings.
The use of bio fuels in road traffic achieved a reduction by nearly 2 percent.
Kees Olsthoorn (CBS) and Kees Peek (Planbureau voor de Leefomgeving)