Greenhouse gas emission intensity of electricity generation in Europe

The greenhouse gas (GHG) emission intensity of power generation is falling across the EU. Climate mitigation and energy policies and legislation addressing air pollutant emissions from industrial installations support decarbonisation via a gradual switch to renewable or to less carbon-intensive fossil fuels and by improving the efficiency of transformation processes in the sector. By 2019, the […]

Industrial pollutant releases to air in Europe

Industrial releases of air pollutants that are damaging to human health and the environment decreased between 2010 and 2019 in Europe, with emissions of greenhouse gases (e.g. CO 2 and sulphur oxides) and other pollutants (e.g. nitrogen oxides, dust and heavy metals) all declining significantly. The value that industry generated for the European economy during […]

Industrial pollutant releases to water in Europe

Between 2010 and 2019, industrial releases to Europe’s water bodies of pollutants that are damaging to human health and the environment declined overall. Releases of heavy metals declined significantly, while emissions of nitrogen and phosphorus, which cause eutrophication, declined to a lesser extent. In the same period, the economic value of industry increased by 14%, […]

Diversion of waste from landfill in Europe

A key goal of EU waste policy is to cut the amount of waste sent to landfill. Overall, the amount of landfill waste has decreased ( in 2018 it was  7.6% less than in 2010), even though the total amount of waste generated has continued to increase. The landfill rate — waste sent to landfill as […]

Waste generation and decoupling in Europe

  Between 2010 and 2018, total waste generation increased by 5% (114 million tonnes) in the EU-27. When major mineral wastes are excluded from the total, it increased by 7% (50.3 million tonnes). This means that the EU-27 is not on track to meet its policy goal of reducing waste generation. These trends have been driven […]

Forest fires in Europe

Climate change has increased forest fire risk across Europe. Even so, the burnt area of the Mediterranean region has decreased slightly since 1980, indicating that fire control efforts have been effective. However, in recent years, forest fires have affected regions in central and northern Europe not typically prone to fires, and, in 2018, more countries […]

European sea surface temperature

All European seas have warmed considerably since 1870, particularly since the late 1970s. During the period for which comprehensive data are available (1981-2018), sea surface temperature increased by between 0.2 °C, in the North Atlantic, and 0.5 °C, in the Black Sea, per decade. This increase is projected to continue, although more slowly than that of air […]

Status of marine fish and shellfish stocks in European seas

As a main source of protein, commercial fish stocks and other commercial sea products are renewable resources, which could sustain human needs in the long term — if exploited in an appropriate manner. Although further improvements are still necessary, the analysis of long time series shows clear and important signs of improvement in the North-East […]

Waste recycling in Europe

  The waste recycling rate — the proportion of waste generated that is recycled — is growing in the EU-27, indicating progress towards using more waste as a resource and achieving a circular economy. The rate of progress is slowing down, however, with little improvement over the past 5 years. Achieving a more circular economy requires a […]

Ocean acidification

Ocean surface pH declined from 8.2 to below 8.1 over the industrial era as a result of an increase in atmospheric CO 2 concentrations. This decline corresponds to an increase in oceanic acidity of about 30%. Reductions in surface water pH are observed across the global ocean. Ocean acidification has impacts on marine organisms and […]