Luxembourg, 8 May 2019 (MIA/dpa) – Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions “significantly” fell by 2.5 per cent in the European Union last year, compared with 2017 figures, the bloc’s statistics agency Eurostat said in an estimate published on Wednesday.
The EU sees itself as a frontrunner in efforts to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, which are considered a major contributor to global warming and account for around 80 per cent of all greenhouse gas emissions in the bloc.
The EU signed up in 2015 to the Paris Agreement to curb global warming, but there is disagreement among member states on how ambitious a path to pursue.
“After four years without substantial emission reductions, the EU has finally started to walk the road to the zero-carbon economy. Now we need to start running decisively,” said Wendel Trio of Climate Action Network, a campaign group.
Sharp emissions reductions are needed every year to prevent extreme weather events, droughts, food shortages and economic devastation, he added.
The biggest cuts in CO2 emissions were recorded in Portugal, at 9 per cent, followed by Bulgaria, Ireland and Germany, according to the estimate.
However, eight member states saw their emissions rise, led by Latvia with an increase of 8.5 per cent, followed by Malta, Estonia and Luxembourg.