As economies recovered from the coronavirus crisis, greenhouse gas emissions increased across the European Union in the third quarter of 2021, according to the report released by Eurostat on Tuesday.
Eurostat’s report showed that emissions generated by business activiies totaled 881 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents in the third quarter of 2021, up 6% from the same period of 2020. The rebound follows a sharp decline in activity in the same quarter of 2020 due to the COVID-19 crisis.
According to Eurostat, the manufacturing sector accounted for 23% of total emissions over the time, while energy supply contributed 21%. Homes and agricultural both accounted for 14%.
Despite the effects of the economic recovery, stated by the report, emissions in the third quarter were still down from 891 million tonnes in the same period in 2019 (pre-pandemic period), continuing a long-term trend of steady reductions toward the bloc's targets.
Among individual nations, Bulgaria saw the greatest increase in emissions across the bloc in the third quarter, with a 22.7% increase, followed by Latvia and Greece, with 16.2% and 13.1% increases, respectively. Slovenia, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands, on the other hand, saw 2.6%, 2.3% and 1.6% reduction in emissions.
In hopes of putting the bloc on track to achieve its net zero goal by 2050, the European Commission has launched the first tranche of its “Fit for 55” package in July. The package proposed policy framework for the bloc’s Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS) and the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM). Later in December, the executive body unveiled a second set of scenarios, focusing on methane emission reduction as well as building renovation.
The steps are designed to ensure the world's third-largest emitter fulfill its goal of reducing net greenhouse gas emissions by 55% from 1990 levels by 2030. By 2019, its emissions were 24% lower than they were in 1990.