A2: Emissions of greenhouse gases from natural resources

Final Final

Short description

This indicator tracks the changes in greenhouse gas emissions from natural resources as described in the Clean Growth Strategy. Greenhouse gases contribute to global climate change which is a pressure on many aspects of our environment. The indicator shows the annual net amount of greenhouse gas emissions from land use and land use change, the forestry, agriculture and waste sectors and from the use of fluorinated gases.

Methodologies from the Wetlands Supplement have been implemented in the 1990 to 2019 Greenhouse Gas Inventory, and so additional net emissions from peatlands will be included in our next update.

Underlying data are already published annually in Greenhouse Gas Inventories 1990-2018.

Trend description

After a small initial increase, emissions of greenhouse gases from natural resources (waste, land use and land use change, forestry sink, fluorinated gases, agriculture, net total including forestry sink) in England have fallen by 52%, from 106 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (Mt CO2e) in 1990 to 51 Mt CO2e in 2018. Net greenhouse gas emissions have fallen from all sectors included within this indicator; however, the greatest reduction has been achieved in the waste sector (38 Mt CO2e or 69%). While emissions from land use and land use change, fluorinated gases and from agriculture have fallen by 52%, 31% and 19% respectively, and net removals by the forestry sector have increased by 14%, the total net improvements in these 4 sectors combined (16 Mt CO2e) is less than half of that achieved in the waste sector. More recently, for example in the latest 10 years, net emissions of greenhouse gases from: the waste sector; land use and land use change; and fluorinated gases have all continued to fall at similar rates to those seen over the long term, whereas improvements in net removals by the forestry sector have slowed and net emissions from agriculture have fluctuated but show little overall change between 2008 and 2018.

Sub-categories

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This table provides metadata for the interim or final indicator presented above.

Indicator name

Emissions of greenhouse gases from natural resources

Indicator reference

A2

Outcome Indicator Framework theme

Air

Headline indicator status

Greenhouse gas emissions

Relevant goal(s) in the 25 Year Environment Plan
  • Mitigating and adapting to climate change
Relevant target(s) in the 25 Year Environment Plan
  • Continuing to cut net greenhouse gas emissions including from land use, land use change, the agriculture and waste sectors and the use of fluorinated gases
Position in the natural capital framework
  • Pressure on natural capital assets
Related reporting commitments
  • UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) greenhouse gas emissions inventory data for Agriculture, Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF), Waste Management and Industrial Processes
  • The UK Climate Change Act 2008 requires an annual report by the Committee on Climate Change to parliament on whether the UK is on course to meet its carbon budgets and targets
Geographic scope

England

Status of indicator development

Final

Date last updated

11 June 2021