Rise in greenhouse gas emissions

 

A A A

The UK's greenhouse gas emissions rose in 2010, the first increase since 2003, figures confirmed today.

The final estimates for 2010 showed that greenhouse gas output rose by more than 3%, largely due to an increase in gas use for heating homes in the face of cold weather at the beginning and the end of the year.

Emissions from the residential sector rose by almost 15% from 2009, the statistics from the Department of Energy and Climate Change showed.

The rise in emissions was also driven in part by switching away from nuclear to coal and gas for generating electricity.

Carbon emissions, which make up most of the UK's greenhouse gases, rose by almost 4% in 2010.

The increase came after a sharp fall in emissions in 2009 of almost a tenth in the face of the economic downturn, with the result that emissions in 2010 were still well below pre-recession levels.

But green groups said the figures, which are slightly worse than the provisional estimates for 2010 published last year, were a wake-up call for the Government.

Environmentalists called for greater strides in home energy efficiency to reduce emissions and help people deal with rising fuel bills.

Keith Allott, head of climate change at WWF-UK, said: "If the Government ever needed a wake up call on greenhouse gas emissions here it is.

"In particular it is alarming to see emissions from homes rising when people are struggling to pay their energy bills.

"The Government must ensure that its policies on energy efficiency deliver at scale to reduce emissions and protect consumers."

He added: "The UK's over-reliance on gas has pushed up emissions along with people's energy bills.

"It's a clear sign that the Government needs to back investors in renewable energy and get us off the fossil fuel hook once and for all."

The Government has a number of policies designed to boost renewables and energy efficiency, including the "green deal" which will cover the upfront costs of improving home energy efficiency with money paid back from savings on bills.

But Louise Hutchins from Greenpeace warned that instead of slashing emissions and sparking a "green jobs bonanza", the UK was seeing progress stalling.

"The fact that the latest jump in figures is partly down to the cold snap in 2010 is no excuse, after all Sweden has higher energy costs and colder winters but their bills are lower because they have better insulated homes.

"To copy their success the Government's flagship green deal will need more resources, and that requires greater political ambition."

She said newly-appointed Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey "gets it", but called on him to deliver on the policy.

Friends of the Earth's executive director Andy Atkins said: "The rise in fossil fuel use is bad news for the planet and cash-strapped families struggling to cope with the rocketing cost of gas and coal.

"Switching to clean British power and slashing energy waste is the only way to cut fuel bills, reduce emissions and safeguard energy supplies in the future - this must be a top priority for the new Energy Secretary, Ed Davey."

PA

Sport
Radamel Falcao
footballManchester United agree loan deal for Monaco striker Falcao
Voices
A man shoots at targets depicting a portrait of Russian President Vladimir Putin, in a shooting range in the center of the western Ukrainian city of Lviv
voicesIt's cowardice to pretend this is anything other than an invasion
Arts and Entertainment
The eyes have it: Kate Bush
music
Sport
Louis van Gaal, Radamel Falcao, Arturo Vidal, Mats Hummels and Javier Hernandez
footballFalcao, Hernandez, Welbeck and every deal live as it happens
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
booksNovelist takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Arts and Entertainment
Al Pacino in ‘The Humbling’, as an ageing actor
filmHam among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
News
Fifi Trixibelle Geldof with her mother, Paula Yates, in 1985
people
Arts and Entertainment
Downton Abbey fans rejoice, series five returns later this month
TV
Arts and Entertainment
booksExclusive extract from Howard Jacobson’s acclaimed new novel
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Business Development Manager

Salary/Rate: £32,000/annum: M&E Global Resources Ltd: Description/Main Duties ...

IT Systems Manager

£40000 - £45000 per annum + pension, healthcare,25 days: Ashdown Group: An est...

Application Support Analyst / Junior SQL Server DBA

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established professional services...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Birmingham - Huxley Associates

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Huxley Associates are currentl...

Day In a Page

Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor