Plan Bureau: ‘Greenhouse gas levels 2% higher than in 2014’
According to a new report by the Federal Plan Bureau (FPB), greenhouse gas emissions in Belgium were 2% higher in 2019 than in 2014. Carbon dioxide (CO2) represented 86% of total greenhouse gas emissions in 2019.
Greenhouse gas emissions decreased by 16% between 2008 and 2019. But, after a gradual decline until their lowest level in 2014, they started rising again from 2015 “to decline slightly afterward until 2019”, the report says.
Transport, energy, and industry
The explanation for the general decline, according to FPB, is the lower emission level of some industries and households. “The transport sector, the energy sector, and the industry contribute most to the decline because their emissions decreased significantly, by -26%, -24%, and -18%, respectively.
In 2019, CO2 emissions represented 86% of total greenhouse gas emissions. A decrease by 16% between 2008 and 2019. Other greenhouse gas emissions are methane (6%) and nitrous oxide (5%), and they decreased by 12 and 20% between 2008 and 2019.
The industry emitted slightly more than one-third of total greenhouse gases, households about 20%, while the energy sector’s share decreased from 15 to 13%. The only two sectors with increasing emissions (between 2008 and 2019) are the primary sector ( from 2 to 11%) and the services sector (from 2 to 9%).
ArcelorMittal, the multinational steel manufacturing corporation, is an important polluter. The company exploits about 15 blast furnaces in Europe but recently announced to invest 1,1 billion euros in its production unit in Ghent to reduce CO2 emissions by 3,9 million tons, or about 4% of Flanders’ total CO2 emissions. End September, ArcelorMittal signed a declaration of intent for it.
Greenhouse gases absorb heat radiation, and high concentrations of polluting elements in the air lead to a higher temperature, concludes FPB.