Greenpeace comment on reported drop of EU carbon emissions in 2011

Press release - May 29, 2013
Brussels – The European Environment Agency has released new figures for average EU carbon emissions in 2011 [1]. The figures show an 18.4 per cent drop in emissions since 1990, just shy of the EU’s target to cut emissions by 20 per cent by 2020.

Reacting to the news, Greenpeace EU spokesperson Mark Breddy said: "This drop in carbon emissions in 2011 is good news, but the situation isn’t entirely peachy. What the numbers demonstrate is that the EU has virtually hit its 2020 target to cut carbon nine years early. This shows how ridiculously low the 20% target is and highlights the need for EU governments to step up ambition levels.”

“The 2011 drop is mostly due to a milder winter and the effects of the economic slowdown in Europe. Beneath the surface, the numbers also show that the EU’s carbon market is grinding to a halt, allowing European industry to start using more super-polluting fuels like coal and lignite," added Breddy.

Greenpeace is calling for at least a 30 per cent cut in domestic EU emissions by 2020 and a 55 per cent domestic cut by 2030.


[1] European Environment Agency press release:


Mark Breddy – Greenpeace EU head of communications:

+32 496 156229 (mobile),


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Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning organisation that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace. Greenpeace does not accept donations from governments, the EU, businesses or political parties.