Europe’s transport sector set to make up almost half of the continent’s emissions in 2030

(Transport and Environment, 20 Mar 2024) Since a peak in 2007, the transport sector has decarbonised three times slower than the rest of the economy, making it the ‘problem child’ of Europe’s climate efforts.

Transport alone is set to make up nearly half of Europe’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in 2030, new Transport & Environment (T&E) analysis shows. European transport emissions have increased by more than a quarter since 1990, and T&E’s State of European Transport analysis finds that while emissions across the wider economy are already in decline, transport emissions continue to grow. Europe must start taking its transport emissions problem seriously if it is to achieve net zero in 2050, says T&E.

Since its peak in 2007, transport has been decarbonising more than three times slower than the rest of the economy. Under current climate policies its share could reach 44% of all GHG emissions by 2030, up from 29% today. Transport emissions in the EU are now more than 1000 MtCO2e, equivalent to the total emissions of Germany and the Netherlands combined. While transport emissions are unlikely to return to their most recent peak in 2019, unless additional measures are taken Europe will fail to reach net zero in 2050.

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Transport and Environment, 20 Mar 2024: Europe’s transport sector set to make up almost half of the continent’s emissions in 2030