‘Ireland’s trading scheme emissions down overall…but food emissions up’ – EPA

Ireland’s emissions from the 103 stationary facilities in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme were down by 4.8% in 2017 compared to 2016 – but emissions have increased from the food and drink sector.

This national reduction is compared to an increase of approximately 0.3% across Europe.

Emissions from the Irish power generation sector, down by 8.2%, contributed the major share of the decrease in emission levels.

Emissions from the food and drink industry sector rose by 2.5% however, while the cement sector also saw a 2.1% increase.

David Flynn, EPA programme manager, said: “This is the first time since 2013 that Ireland’s Emissions Trading Scheme emissions have shown a decrease.

“The decrease is principally due to a welcome reduction in the use of carbon-intensive fossil fuels in power generation and an increase in the use of renewable energy.

These changes demonstrate a move in the right direction for the necessary transformation in Ireland’s energy system.

“Although it is positive to see reducing carbon intensity in electricity generation, other sectors recorded higher emission levels. It is important that investment in low carbon technologies is made attractive for industry.

“A higher price for carbon will help to drive such investment. It is encouraging to see the carbon price is now above €10/t following recent amendments to the Emissions Trading Scheme Directive for the period 2021-2030.”

In Ireland, 103 major industrial and institutional sites participate in the Emissions Trading Scheme. These include sites operating in the power generation, cement, lime, and oil refining sectors.

Also included are large companies in sectors such as food and drink, pharmaceuticals and semi-conductors.

All companies participating in the scheme are required to report their emissions to the EPA by March 31 each year.