Wind and solar drive record emissions cut under EU ETS


Photo: makunin from Pixabay


April 5, 2024






April 5, 2024





The European Union’s significant progress in power sector decarbonization, driven mainly by increased electricity generation from wind and solar, has resulted in the biggest annual emissions drop under the EU Emission Trading System (EU ETS) since the scheme was launched in 2005.

The observed trend confirms the effectiveness and efficiency of the EU ETS as the main policy instrument for the decarbonization of the European economy, according to a press release from the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Climate Action.

Total emissions under the EU ETS decreased by 15.5% in 2023, compared to 2022 levels, and are now around 47% below 2005 levels and well on track to achieve the 2030 target of -62%, according to data reported by EU member states as of April 2, 2024, the directorate said.

In a report issued late last year, the European Commission said the EU ETS had helped cut emissions from the energy and industry sectors by 37.3% from the 2005 levels, noting that the COVID-19 pandemic and the energy crisis had temporarily slowed down efforts to reduce emissions.

Power generation emissions dropped by an impressive 24%

Emissions from electricity production in 2023 decreased by an impressive 24% against 2022 due to a substantial increase in renewable electricity production, chiefly wind and solar, at the expense of both coal and gas, according to the press release.

Hydropower and nuclear power plants, whose output had recovered thanks to improved climate conditions, also contributed to the emissions decrease in 2023, although to a lesser extent.

Emissions from energy-intensive industries decreased 7%, but aviation saw a 10% rise

In energy-intensive industrial sectors, such as cement, iron and steel, emissions decreased by around 7% against 2022. The drop is attributed to a combination of lower output and improved efficiency.

The aviation sector, on the other hand, saw an annual increase in emissions, of about 10%, due to its continued recovery from the traffic collapse caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the directorate said.

Comments (0)

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Enter Your Comment
Please wait... Please fill in the required fields. There seems to be an error, please refresh the page and try again. Your comment has been sent.

Related Articles

Democracy Perception Index 2024 climate change europe survey

Europeans are now more worried about immigration than climate change – survey

10 May 2024 - The 2024 Democracy Perception Index is based on interviews with over 62,953 respondents from 53 countries


UK minister: G7 reaches ‘historic’ deal to abandon coal in first half of 2030s

30 April 2024 - An official statement on the G7 decarbonization commitments is due later today

China’s energy transition on track for carbon neutrality by 2060

24 April 2024 - China is making huge progress toward its goal of reducing net emissions to zero, Norwegian consulting firm DNV estimated in a report

BiH drafts first interactive GIS map of locations vulnerable to forest fires

BiH drafts first interactive map of locations vulnerable to forest fires

24 April 2024 - Authors have identified key risk factors for forest fires as well as priority areas for conducting preventive measures