Greenhouse gas emissions higher due to winter cold and production growth

23/08/2011 15:00

Greenhouse gas emissions were 6 percent higher last year than in 2009 and have risen for the first time in seven years. Greenhouse gas emissions are only 1 percent below the level of 1990, the base year for the Kyoto Protocol.

Greenhouse gas emissions

Greenhouse gas emissions

Considerable increase carbon dioxide emissions

Greenhouse gas emissions totalled nearly 211 billion CO2 equivalents last year, 12 billion more than in 2009. Carbon dioxide (CO2) entirely accounted for the increase. CO2 emissions (182 billion kg) have never been this high. Natural gas consumption was higher as a result of the improved economy and the cold winter. Emissions of other greenhouse gases hardly changed.

Carbon dioxide emissions by sector

Carbon dioxide emissions by sector

Winter cold and output growth

Half of the increase in CO2 emissions is caused by the winter cold during the beginning and the end of the year. Natural gas consumption in households and office buildings was much higher than in 2009. Manufacturing output also improved considerably in 2010, causing an emission increase by nearly 8 percent. The energy sector produced more electricity. The export of electricity has grown substantially, but domestic consumption remained at the same level. Road traffic emissions of carbon dioxide also remained stable.

Kyoto directive

Under the Kyoto Protocol, the Netherlands has committed itself to reducing the emission of greenhouse gases by 6 percent from its 1990 level in the period 2008–2012. Part of this reduction may be realised by the use of Dutch funds abroad. The Netherlands can buy up emission rights in other countries, for example, or fund projects which result in reduced emissions outside the Netherlands.

Emissions in the base year equalled 213 billion CO2 equivalents. In 2005, greenhouse gas emissions dropped below this level for the first time. In recession year 2009, emissions were nearly 7 percent lower than in the base year.

Kees Olsthoorn (CBS) and Kees Peek (Emissieregistratie)