Indicator: A-08 Greenhouse - change in total carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by gas

Data

Trends in annual greenhouse gas emissions
Greenhouse gases 1990 Mt CO 2 -e 2004 Mt CO 2 -e 1990 % of total 2004 % of total Changes Mt CO 2 -e % change in emissions
CO 2 (a) 403.9 415.0 73.2% 73.5% -11.1 2.7%
CH 4 122.9 119.7 22.3% 21.2% 3.2 -2.6%
N 2 O 19.5 24.7 3.5% 4.4% -5.2 26.4%
Other (a) 5.6 5.4 1.0% 0.9% 0.2 -4.1%
Total CO2-e 551.9 564.7 100.0% 100.0% -12.8 2.3%

Totals and percentages may not correspond exactly due to precision of underlying data.
(a) * PFCs, HFCs, SF6

Source: Australian Greenhouse Office 2006, National Greenhouse Gas Inventory 2004: Accounting for the 108% Target, Department of Environment and Heritage, Canberra, Table 1.

Change in total CO 2 -equivalent emissions for each gas, 1990-2002 (Kyoto Accounting)
Greenhouse gases 1990 Mt CO 2 -e 2002 Mt CO 2 -e 1990 % of total 2002 % of total Changes Mt CO 2 -e % change in emissions
CO 2 392.1 384.6 72.2% 69.9% -7.4 -1.9%
CH 4 120.7 122.6 22.2% 22.3% 1.9 1.6%
N 2 O 23.6 34.9 4.3% 6.3% 11.3 47.9%
Other (a) 6.8 8.0 1.3% 1.5% 1.2 17.5%
Total CO 2 -e 543.2 550.1 100.0% 100.0% 6.9 1.3%

Totals and percentages may not correspond exactly due to precision of underlying data.
(a) HFCs, PFCs, SF 6 and confidential industrial processes emissions expressed as CO 2 -e

National Greenhouse Gas Inventory; table 1, p. 16

What the data mean

The data shows a slight increase in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions over the reporting period, 1990 to 2004, and a small decrease in methane (CH4). These are the two main gases in terms of carbon equivalent emissions. Of those gases that make up a smaller amount of carbon equivalent emissions, there have been large increases in nitrous oxide (N2O) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HFCs). The data also shows a large decrease in perfluorochemicals (PFCs) and sulfur hexafluoride (SF6).

Data Limitations

Nil known.

Issues for which this is an indicator and why

Atmosphere — Climate variability and change - Greenhouse 

Atmospheric constituents such as carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide contribute to a natural greenhouse effect and, with clouds, maintain the earth’s energy balance. The earth’s energy balance can change through increasing concentrations of these constituents in the atmosphere, as a result of human activities and natural events. Change in total carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by gas is a direct indicator for this issue.

Other indicators for this issue:

Further Information