National emissions continue upward trend

The Department of the Environment and Energy has released the overdue quarterly update of Australia's National Greenhouse Gas Inventory, finding that annual emissions for 2016-17, excluding the Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) sector, have increased by 0.7% when compared with the previous year.

The National Inventory Total (including LULUCF) for the year increased by 1.3%. It was the third consecutive year that Australia's greenhouse gas emissions have increased.

Australia's Emissions Projections for 2017 have also been released, showing emissions returning to 2000 levels of 551 million tonnes of carbon dioxide by 2020 (down from this year's 554 mtCO2), and rising by 3.5% by 2030 to 570 mtCO2.

The document concludes that Australia is on track to "overachieve on its 2020 target by 294 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (Mt CO2-e), inclusive of carryover, or 166 Mt CO2-e without carryover".

However, the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory update, which includes figures for for June 2017 and September 2017, shows that for June, emissions increased 0.3% when compared to the March quarter 2017, with increases in trend emissions from the transport and industrial processes and product use sectors partially offset by minor decreases in trend emissions from the electricity, stationary energy (excluding electricity), fugitive emissions, agriculture and waste sectors. For the September quarter, the emissions trend was down 1.5%.

2016-17 emissions per capita (excluding LULUCF) 2016-17 were 22.5 t CO2 -e per person.

The emissions intensity of the economy (GDP) has continued to decline and is projected to fall by 52 per cent in 2030 when compared to 2005. Emissions per person are also expected to fall steadily by 36 per cent in 2030 when compared to 2005

The Quarterly Update of Australia's National Greenhouse Gas Inventory is available here.

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