datalab
Key figures on climate
France, Europe and Worldwide
2023 EDITION
lang

European overview of GHG emissions

GHG emissions in the EU-27 in 2021

In Mt CO2 eq

Source

Years

CO2

CH4

N2O

Fluorinated gases

Total

Energy use

1990

3,545.6

178.3

23.3

0.0

3,747.1

2021

2,570.2

69.9

22.7

0.0

2,662.7

Industrial processes

1990

310.0

1.8

83.1

49.7

444.7

2021

231.7

1.7

6.6

77.9

317.9

Agriculture

1990

14.2

296.1

174.3

0.0

484.6

2021

9.8

232.1

136.5

0.0

378.4

Waste

1990

3.8

172.2

8.1

0.0

184.2

2021

2.7

98.0

8.6

0.0

109.3

Total excluding LULUCF

1990

3,880.0

648.4

288.8

49.7

4,867.0

2021

2,817.7

401.7

174.4

77.9

3,471.7

LULUCF

1990

- 234.4

14.2

11.4

0.0

- 208.8

2021

- 253.5

12.9

10.6

0.0

- 230.0

Total

1990

3,645.6

662.6

300.2

49.7

4,658.2

2021

2,564.2

414.6

185.0

77.9

3,241.7

Note: the waste sector excludes incineration with energy recovery (included in "Energy use").
Source: UNFCCC format - EEA, 2023

In 2021, the European Union's GHG emissions, excluding LULUCF, amounted to 3.5 Gt CO2 eq. CO2 accounts for 81.2% of these emissions, while 11.6% are due to methane (CH4). In a context of economic recovery following the health crisis, emissions rose by 5.1% compared with 2020. Over the longer term, they are 28.9% lower than in 1990.

GHG emissions (excluding LULUCF) of EU member countries in 2021 and trends since 1990

Note: the graph shows each country's emissions in 2021 and their evolution since 1990. For example, Germany emitted 760 Mt CO2 eq in 2021, down 39.2% on 1990.
Source: UNFCCC format - EEA, 2023

GHG emissions (excluding LULUCF) in the 27-member European Union fell by 29% between 1990 and 2021. Germany, Italy, France, Poland and Spain, which account for two-thirds of EU emissions in 2021, contribute unevenly to this decline: + 0. 4% for Spain, - 15.8% for Poland, - 19.9% for Italy, - 23.1% for France and - 39.2% for Germany (the countries that formerly belonged to the USSR generally experienced a sharp drop as they left behind a less efficient, highly industrialized, planned economy).

Among the other member countries, the level of decline is highly variable, with some countries dividing their emissions by 2 or more, notably the Baltic states (Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania), while others, such as Ireland and Cyprus, saw their emissions increase over the same period.

Breakdown by source of GHG emissions in the EU-27 between 1990 and 2021

Source: UNFCCC format - EEA, 2023

In the European Union, energy use remains the main source of GHG emissions in 2021 (76.7% of the total excluding LULUCF), followed by agriculture (10.9%) and industrial processes (9.2%). 33.9% of energy use comes from the energy industry, notably electricity production, and 29.4% from transport.

Between 2020 and 2021, total emissions excluding LULUCF rose by 5.1%. Emissions linked to energy use were up (6.5%), driven by the energy industry (+7.1%) and above all transport (+8.6%), particularly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Increases were also seen in the manufacturing and construction industries (+6. 5%) and, to a lesser extent, in the residential and services sectors (+3%). Emissions from industrial processes also rose (+3.6%), while emissions from other sources (agriculture, waste) fell slightly. Over the longer term, emissions have fallen since 1990 in all these sectors, with the notable exception of transport (+16. 3%, see p. 48).