Lower emissions still needed
Greenhouse gas emissions in the Wellington region are reducing in spite of increases in population and regional Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
The Wellington Region Greenhouse Gas Inventory Report shows the region is bucking the national trend by reducing its emissions by about 3 per cent (excluding forestry) since 2000/01. This compares to a gradual rise inemissions nationally.
Increases in emissions are usually closely linked with growth in population and GDP. Since 2000/01, the Wellington region has had a 12 per cent increase in population and GDP has increased by 26 per cent. If the forestry sector is included, the region’s emissions have remained stable over the 12 year period.
Chair of GWRC, Fran Wilde, says the Wellington region’s lower per capita emissions compared to national levels are largely due to less industrial and agricultural activity in the region.
“Our ambition should be to continue to lower emissions through increasing productivity in our knowledge-based economy and more use of clean technology, including in agriculture.”
A number of other factors have helped drive the trend in the region including a greater proportion of renewable electricity in the national grid, decline in electricity consumption, relatively stable consumption of road transport fuels, new technology in landfills, water and wastewater treatment plants and a decline in animal numbers.
The inventory was developed by URS New Zealand Limited at the request of GWRC, Wellington, Porirua, Hutt and Upper Hutt city councils, and Kapiti Coast District Council. It assesses the contributions of emissions from six sectors: stationary energy (eg electricity and gas), transport (including domestic aviation), industrial processes and industrial product use (such as gases used in refrigerators and air conditioning systems), agriculture and waste. It also measures changes in the forestry sector.