Though we can only estimate the total greenhouse gas emissions produced by the UK, we can still give quite an accurate account of what we contribute. This post will be focusing mainly on the figures from 2018. 

You may be curious about the UK’s total contribution to greenhouse gas emissions, as was I before I started writing this post! In this post you’ll get an overview of what our current carbon emissions are, where they come from and how much each sector contributes to our total.

Luckily, the 2018 figures may be a good projection for 2019 as our energy mix has been fairly similar to 2018, well maybe with a little less coal and a bit more wind. Take a look at the graph below for a better idea!


Where do our greenhouse gas emissions come from?


Like most countries across the world the UK contributes emissions from more sectors than just our energy generation. Though there may be lesser areas in the UK that contribute toward greenhouse gas emissions, the main sectors that contribute the most can be seen in the graph above. But just for consistency I’ll list them here as well:

  • Energy supply
  • Energy from power stations
  • Other energy supply
  • Business
  • Transport
  • Public
  • Residential
  • Agriculture
  • Industrial process
  • Waste management

You may be surprised but energy wasn’t the largest contributor to our annual emissions. In fact, transport beat the energy sector by almost 20 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent or MTCo2e. 




How UK greenhouse gas emissions are changing!


The UK’s greenhouse gas emissions are declining, largely due in part to the lack of coal and renewable boost we’ve had recently! So, it seems like we’re on the right path, we just need to do it quicker! You can see the declining trend in the graph below: 


Between 2017 and 2018 estimates indicated that carbon dioxide emissions decreased by 2.4%, taking 9.1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide out of our atmosphere. The sector that was responsible for the largest decrease in carbon emissions was the energy sector. Providing 7.2% decrease (7.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide) since 2017.

This decrease in carbon emissions was led by the downward trend in power station emissions all over the UK. A reduction of 9.9% between 2017 and 2018 to be precise! This is due to the current energy generation fuel mix, away from coal and toward green, renewable energy! 


The information in this post comes from a report made by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy: 2018 UK Greenhouse gas emissions, provisional figures. 

Thank you very much for taking the time to read our post! Have a great day! 

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