|Electricity (megatonnes of CO2 equivalents)||Mobility (megatonnes of CO2 equivalents)||Agriculture (megatonnes of CO2 equivalents)||Manufacturing (megatonnes of CO2 equivalents)||Built environment (megatonnes of CO2 equivalents)||Urgenda target (megatonnes of CO2 equivalents)|
|Source: CBS, RIVM/Emissions register|
Emissions down by one quarter relative to 1990
As of 2015, the Urgenda target applies to the Netherlands: a reduction in GHG emissions of at least 25 percent compared to 1990 by the year 2020. The target was thus achieved in 2020 with a 25.5-percent reduction. Emissions by the electricity sector fell by 39 percent relative to 2015, partly due to the closure of several coal-fired power plants. Emissions by coal plants dropped by 80 percent over this five-year period.
GHG emissions substantially lower in 2020
In 2020, annual GHG emissions stood at 164 megatonnes of CO2 equivalents. This is 56 megatonnes less than in 1990. A reduction of 16 megatonnes out of the 56 was achieved in 2020. The electricity sector emitted nearly 9 megatonnes less than one year previously by using less coal.
Emissions in the mobility sector (traffic and transport) fell by 4.5 megatonnes relative to 2019. This is related to 15 percent lower emissions from road traffic, as a result of the government’s advice to stay at home as much as possible and preferably work from home. Less natural gas combustion in the relatively warm year of 2020 caused lower GHG emissions from dwellings and offices (by approximately 1.5 megatonnes of CO2 equivalents).
Emissions by the Dutch economy 21 percent higher than according to IPCC
CBS calculates emissions not only according to IPCC guidelines (on which the Urgenda target is based) but also according to other frameworks, including GHG emissions by the Dutch economy in accordance with the Environmental accounts and the GHG footprint.
In 2020, GHG emissions related to all Dutch economic activities amounted to 199 megatonnes of CO2 equivalents, 21 percent higher than emissions according to the IPCC framework (164 megatonnes). This is partly because, unlike in the IPCC figures, biomass combustion (19 megatonnes of CO2 equivalents) and Dutch air and sea transport (8 and 5 megatonnes of CO2 equivalents, respectively) are fully counted towards GHG emissions.
Dutch GHG footprint nearly 40 percent larger than according to IPCC
Emissions are even higher when calculated as the GHG footprint, based on the consumption of goods and services by residents of the Netherlands. This is because many emissions are generated during the production of goods and services abroad which are intended for domestic consumption. According to this calculation, the Netherlands emits 14 percent more GHG than under the definition of emissions by the Dutch economy, and 38 percent more than emissions under IPCC guidelines.