Updated Sep 27, 2023

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Energy sector leads in Scotland's emissions

Scotland's battle against greenhouse gas emissions faced new challenges last year, as official statistics by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) revealed a small increase in emissions.

The data, part of the Scottish Pollutant Release Inventory (SPRI) for 2022, unveiled that greenhouse gas emissions from Scottish industry increased when compared to 2021 figures.

It is important to note that emissions remained lower than those recorded in 2019.

The global warming potential of these emissions, measured in carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e), saw a 2.7% increase, equivalent to 0.30 megatonnes (Mt) CO2e, between 2021 and 2022.

The rise followed two years of reductions primarily attributed to temporary site closures due to pandemic restrictions and shifts in production levels.

According to the report, carbon dioxide emissions, which are the dominant contributor to greenhouse gases, rose by 4.1% compared to 2021, but still remained 7.3% lower than 2019 figures.

The energy sector emerged as the highest emitter in Scotland, accounting for 44.7% of overall greenhouse gas emissions.

A 7.2% increase in emissions in 2022 was attributed to production demand and throughput. Notable changes occurred at facilities like the Grangemouth refinery and Peterhead Power Station due to higher refinery throughput and commercial electricity requirements.

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