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EU estimated to have increased carbon emissions 2017 compared with 2016

Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from fossil fuel combustion in the European Union (EU) increased by 1.8 percent in 2017 compared to 2016 according to preliminary estimations from Eurostat, the statistical office of the EU. The largest CO2 reductions in relative percentage terms were in recorded in Finland and Denmark whereas the highest increases were found in Malta and Estonia.

Estimated change in EU (without Sweden) carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, 2017/2016. CO2 emissions are a major contributor to global warming and account for around 80 percent of all EU greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. They are influenced by factors such as climate conditions, economic growth, size of the population, transport and industrial activities. Note 2017 figures from Sweden are under revision and not included (source and graph courtesy Eurostat).

According to Eurostat estimates, CO2 emissions rose in 2017 in a majority of EU Member States, with the highest increase being recorded in Malta (+12.8 percent), followed by Estonia (+11.3 percent), Bulgaria (+8.3 percent) Spain (+7.4 percent) and Portugal (+7.3 percent). Decreases were registered in seven Member States: Finland (-5.9%), Denmark (-5.8%), the United Kingdom (-3.2 percent), Ireland (-2.9 percent), Belgium (-2.4 percent), Latvia (-0.7 percent) and Germany (-0.2 percent).

Eurostat’s early estimates of CO2 emissions from energy use are preliminary and do not include 2017 figures from Sweden as these are under revision. The figures are computed by Eurostat based on monthly energy statistics and using a harmonised methodology. These data may slightly differ from those published nationally.

It should also be noted that imports and exports of energy products have an impact on CO2 emissions in the country where fossil fuels are burned: for example if coal is imported this leads to an increase in emissions, while if electricity is imported, it has no direct effect on emissions in the importing country, as these would be reported in the exporting country where it is produced.

View of boiler house with biomass in-feed from the left and waste from the centre.

Eurostat’s preliminary 2016/2017 EU CO2 emissions data does not contain figures from Sweden or CO2 emissions from the combustion of “non-renewable” waste in waste-to-energy (WTE) plants such as the Mälarenergi’s facility in Västerås, Sweden.

Furthermore, data on CO2 emissions from energy use presented do not include CO2 emissions resulting from the combustion of “non-renewable” waste.

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