The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), has, today, published its provisional greenhouse gas emissions for Ireland for 2018.
The figures show Ireland exceeded its emissions budget for the third year running, but had a marginal decrease of 0.2 % (0.14 Mt CO2eq) with total national emissions estimated at 60.5 million tonnes carbon dioxide equivalent (Mt CO2 eq).
Commenting, Dr. Eimear Cotter, Director of the Office of Environmental Sustainability, said: “Ireland has exceeded its annual EU emissions budget for the third year in a row, and by a margin of over 5 million tonnes.”
“At a time of global urgency to address climate change, this is a national trend that we must reverse.”
“It is time for businesses and communities to support and be supported in taking action to reduce emissions. Ireland must implement the ambitious commitments in the 2019 Climate Action Plan to play its role in averting the worst impacts of climate change.” Cotter added.
Agriculture emissions increased by 1.9% in 2018 (0.38 Mt CO2eq), the report stated.“The most significant drivers are higher dairy cow numbers (+2.7%) which reflects national plans to expand milk production.”
The report outlined that dairy cow numbers have increased by 27% in the last five years while greenhouse gas emissions increased by 8% over that time.
“While agricultural production has gained some efficiency over this period, these gains will not be sufficient to deliver overall emission reductions.”
“Full implementation of the measures outlined in the Climate Action Plan are required.”