Greenhouse gas emissions further down due to economic crisis

09/09/2010 15:00

Total emission of greenhouse gases in the Netherlands fell for the fifth consecutive year in 2009. With 201 billion CO2 equivalents, total emissions were nearly 6 percent below the level of 1990, the reference year for the Kyoto Protocol.

Below the Kyoto Standard

According to the Kyoto Protocol, the Netherlands has committed itself to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 6 percent over the period 2008-2012 relative to 1990. Part of the reduction can be realised abroad by, for example, buying emission rights in other countries or funding projects, which result in reduced emissions outside the Netherlands.

Emissions in the base year were set at 213 billion CO2 equivalents. In 2005, total emissions of greenhouse gases in the Netherlands for the first time dropped below this level.

Greenhouse gas emissions

Greenhouse gas emissions

Substantial reduction carbon dioxide

Last year, greenhouse gas emissions decreased by nearly 3 percent relative to 2008. A CO2 emission reduction by 5.5 billion kg almost entirely accounted for this decrease. As a result of the economic crisis that swept the world in 2009, the consumption of petroleum products and coal was reduced dramatically. Emissions of other greenhouse gases remained more or less stable.

Carbon dioxide emissions by sector

Carbon dioxide emissions by sector

Two thirds of the CO2 emission reduction was realised in manufacturing industry and refineries, one quarter in road traffic. In manufacturing industry, the production of basic metals fell substantially. As a result, carbon dioxide emissions were reduced by nearly 20 percent. Diesel fuel consumption by transport companies declined by more than 7 percent, because fewer goods were carried by road. Carbon dioxide emissions caused by road traffic were reduced by 4 percent.

Kees Olsthoorn (CBS) and Kees Peek (Planbureau voor de Leefomgeving)