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Greenhouse Gases Increase in Iceland

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Greenhouse Gases Increase in Iceland

Black smoke.

Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

The emission of greenhouse gases continues to increase in Iceland, contrary to goals, according to Kjarninn. This is revealed in the National Inventory Report: Emissions of Greenhouse Gases in Iceland from 1990 to 2015. Most emissions are from aluminum smelters and second most from transportation.

According to the Paris Agreement, Iceland, Norway and the European Union should collectively decrease greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent from 1990 until 2030. According to Kjarninn, about 40 percent of Iceland’s emissions is excluded from those commitments. That means that Icelandic authorities are not required by international agreements to decrease emissions from the production of aluminum or ferrosilicon, from international aviation, and other sectors of society.

Greenhouse gas emissions increased by 1.9 percent in Iceland from 2014 to 2015, and have not been higher since 2010. In 2015, there had been an increase in emissions of 28 percent since 1990.

Industry is responsible for more than half of that increase, while land transport is responsible for almost a quarter of the increase.

A report by the University of Iceland’s Institute of Economic Studies, presented in February, warned that Icelandic authorities need to take drastic measures in climate affairs in order to be able to meet their goals.

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