Greenhouse gas emissions 11 percent lower in Q1 2022

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In Q1 2022, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions showed a year-on-year decrease of 11 percent. This is mainly because natural gas consumption was down by a quarter. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) and the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM)/Emissions Register report this on the basis of the latest quarterly figures on GHG emissions in accordance with the IPCC guidelines.

GHG emissions by source sector, Q1
   CO2 (megatonnes of CO2 equivalent)Other greenhouse gases (megatonnes of CO2 equivalent)
Total IPCC2022*36.56.6
Total IPCC2021*41.56.8
Total IPCC
Buildings and construction2022*8.50.2
Buildings and construction2021*9.60.2
* provisional figures

Less natural gas consumption

CO2 emissions decreased in the electricity sector, agriculture, manufacturing and the built environment (homes, offices, schools, care institutions, etc.). This is mainly due to the fact that less natural gas was used. High natural gas prices played a role, but the first quarter of 2022 was also relatively warmer than the same quarter in 2021. The latter mainly has a dampening effect on natural gas consumption in the built environment.

Due to a decrease in output, the electricity sector emitted 14 percent fewer greenhouse gases, despite the fact that more coal was burned instead of natural gas. The increase in production from renewable sources also contributed to lower emissions. The lower electricity production was accompanied by lower electricity consumption, which was partly caused by higher energy prices.

Mobility emissions virtually unchanged

In Q1 2022, greenhouse gas emissions from mobility were approximately the same as in Q1 2021. As a result, mobility emissions were still below pre-COVID levels. The consumption of petrol in this period was 8 percent higher than in the first quarter of 2021, while diesel consumption decreased by 4 percent.

Statistics Netherlands also calculates CO2 emissions from all domestic economic activities according to the national accounts. Compared to emissions according to the IPCC definitions, this also includes the CO2 emissions from international air and sea transport and the emissions from combustion of biomass. In the message below, the CO2 emissions are presented in accordance with the calculation method of the national accounts.

CO2 emissions significantly lower, while Dutch economy grows

In Q1 2022, the Dutch economy emitted 9.9 percent less CO2 than in Q1 2021, while GDP grew by 7.0 percent over this period. Output was significantly higher in almost all sectors of the economy, while CO2 emissions were lower.

The transport sector is the biggest exception to this. This sector emitted 13.5 percent more CO2 than one year previously, and the value added grew by 15.7 percent. The increase in emissions is mainly due to the partial recovery of aviation. CO2 emissions from Dutch aviation were 49 percent higher than in the same quarter last year. Emissions from inland shipping were also higher, by more than 13 percent compared to the first quarter of 2021. Maritime transport emitted less than twelve months previously.

CO2 emissions and economic development, Q1 2022
CategoriesCO2 emissions (year-on-year volume change in %)Value added (year-on-year volume change in %)Bbp (year-on-year volume change in %)
Total (weather adjusted)-5.9
Transport sector13.515.7
Other services-10.38.2
Energy and water supply,
waste management
manufacturing and construction

The calculations of CO2 emissions are a first estimate based on information available at that particular moment. Figures may change as a result of new statistical source information becoming available at a later stage.