Higher CO2 emissions in Q1 2017

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In Q1 2017, CO2 emissions in the Netherlands rose by 1.9 percent year-on-year. In the first estimate, the Dutch economy recorded 3.4 percent growth in the same period. Rising CO2 emissions were mainly due to higher electricity production at power stations and increased transport activities, according to the most recent quarterly data on CO2 emissions released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS).

Q1 2017 had less cold weather conditions compared to Q1 2016; March in particular was relatively warm. When adjusted for this effect, CO2 emissions were 2.3 percent higher than one year previously.

CO2 emissions and economic development, Q1 2017
 CO2 emissionValue added of producersGDP
Dutch economy (weather adjusted)2.3
Dutch economy1.93.4
Transport sector4.81.4
Energy and water supply and waste treatment4.31
Agriculture, mining, manufacturing and construction1.73.2

Transport sector emits more CO2

CO2 emissions by the transport sector rose by nearly 5 percent in Q1. This sector is responsible for 12 percent of total emissions. Aviation emissions increased most notably, by nearly 8 percent, mainly due to an increase in aviation activities.

CO2 emissions in relation to the value added of the aviation sector are higher than other parts of the transport sector. Partly as a result of this, the rise in total value added of the transport sector is less significant than the rise in CO2 emissions.

Higher CO2 emissions by energy companies due to higher production

In Q1 2017, CO2 emissions by energy, water and waste management companies went up by over 4 percent year-on-year. These companies account for over 28 percent of total CO2 emissions. The rise can mainly be attributed to a year-on-year increase in electricity production at power stations. The additional electricity output was mainly destined for exports. Energy companies used more natural gas as well as more coal in their production process.

Higher CO2 emissions by refineries and chemical industry

Emissions of CO2 in the cluster agriculture, mining, manufacturing industry and construction were up by nearly 2 percent relative to Q1 2016, while the value added rose by over 3 percent. This cluster contributes 27 percent to total emissions. The petroleum and chemical industries in particular accounted for higher CO2 emissions, mainly due to increased production.

Lower CO2 emissions by households

In Q1 2017, the level of CO2 emissions by other services – accounting for over 11 percent of total CO2 emissions – was the same as in Q1 2016. Consumption of natural gas for the heating of office buildings was down, but motor fuel consumption for transportation was up.

Finally, households showed over 1 percent lower emission levels in Q1 2017, mainly due to less gas consumption for heating. CO2 emissions by households amounted to over 21 percent of total CO2 emissions.

The calculation of CO2 emissions is consistent with the definitions used in Environmental accounts. This is a first estimate.