The EU 15 countries cut the equivalent of Spain’s entire 2012 emissions over four year from 2008-2012, it was revealed yesterday.
New official statistics which countries have given to the UN, under the Kyoto Protocol, also showed all 27 countries recorded their lowest ever greenhouse gas emissions in 2012 – the most up to date, full set of figures for emissions.
The European Environment Agency (EEA) said this shows EU members can still cut carbon while growing its economies.
The group’s analysis of emission trends suggests changes in GDP – such as growth or recession – only explain a third of emissions changes since 1990.
The research suggests greenhouse gas emissions per person in the EU have dropped by almost a quarter since 1990, from 12 to nine tonnes.
Hans Bruyninckx, EEA Executive Director said: “The EU has demonstrated that there is no conflict between a growing economy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Policies have been at the heart of this success. We need to go even further but this will depend on countries implementing policies which already map a path towards a low carbon, energy secure society.”