The latest figures for EU greenhouse gas emissions show a continuing reduction, down 11.3% in 2008 compared to 1990 levels, keeping the region on course for a 20% reduction by 2020.
The report from the European Environment Agency (EEA) indicates that overall emissions from EU-27 countries have been in decline since 2003, with aviation and maritime transport emission declining for the first time in 2008.
The GHG inventory report also reveals that EU-15 countries have cut emissions 6.9% compared to the Kyoto Protocol base-year levels.
Spain represented a third of the net reduction in emissions across EU-27 thanks to replacing coal with natural gas, increased renewables and a sharp decline in gasoline consumption, which was echoed across the region.
The reductions put the EU on track to meet its 2020 emission reduction target through domestic policy measures alone, says the report.
“Although we are expecting an even sharper decline in 2009, caused mainly by the recession, we need to ensure that the downward trend in emissions continues and that Europe boosts its climate investments,” says Jacqueline McGlade, executive director of the EEA.
For further information:
UK 2020 renewables and emissions targets: nearly but not quite (24-May)
European cities pledge to reduce emissions (4-May)
EU plans to set emission reduction targets for shipping and aviation (22-Oct 2009)
Spain way off EU renewables target, according to study (23-Jan 2009)
07 June 2010