Swiss greenhouse gas emissions increased slightly in 2021, according to the latest report from the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) published in April. The report shows that emissions rose by 1.3 million tonnes of CO2 equivalents compared to the previous year, with a total of 45.2 million tonnes emitted in 2021. However, overall emissions were still 18.2% lower than in 1990. The increase was mainly due to higher emissions from the building sector, where more heating was needed during the colder winter months. Transportation emissions also increased slightly, while emissions from industry and agriculture remained largely unchanged. The trend of decreasing synthetic gas emissions observed in previous years continued.
The FOEN will submit the Swiss greenhouse gas inventory for the years 1990-2021 to the UN climate secretariat on April 13, 2023. The inventory provides a comprehensive picture of Switzerland’s greenhouse gas emissions under the Paris Agreement. The inventories will now be submitted according to the requirements of the Paris Agreement, following the end of the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol in 2020.
The report also highlights the progress made in reducing emissions in different sectors. In the building sector, emissions were 30% lower than in 1990, but still increased slightly in 2021 due to colder weather. The industrial sector saw emissions decrease by 21% compared to 1990, while transportation emissions were 7% lower. Agriculture, synthetic gas emissions, and waste management emissions also decreased, with an overall reduction of 11% compared to 1990.
The report shows that while progress has been made in reducing emissions, there is still work to be done in the building and transportation sectors. The FOEN hopes that this report will help raise awareness about the need for continued efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Switzerland.