The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released figures on Ireland’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions, showing that emission have significantly in 2016, following a substantial increase in 2015.
The figures show that Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions increased by 3.5 % overall, with major increases across three main sectors.
Agriculture emissions increased by 2.7%, while transport emissions hiked by 3.7% and energy industry emissions jumped by 6.1%.
In the report, the EPA said that most significant drivers are higher dairy cow numbers (+6.2%) which reflects national plans to expand milk production. Dairy cow numbers have increased by 22% in the last four years while greenhouse gas emissions increased by 8% over that time period.
Dr. Eimear Cotter, Director of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Sustainability, said: “In relation to agriculture, Ireland must optimise agricultural production to ensure long-term environmental integrity and sustainability. The growth in this sector, particularly for dairy and other cattle, points to very significant risks in relation to meeting our de-carbonisation objectives.”
The provisional figures were published in Ireland’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions and can be found here.