According to new studies, the Covid-19 lockdowns resulted in a 10% reduction in carbon emissions across the UK.
However, according to data from Sia Partners, a pan-European management consultancy, as the pandemic progressed and lockdown restrictions were relaxed, carbon emissions began to rise again toward the end of the year.
Emissions were down by 29% across all sectors of the economy in March of last year, with airlines and transportation leading the way. Household emissions, on the other hand, increased by 6% as millions of people were forced to stay at home and a surge in remote working occurred.During the summer, when most of the economy reopened, however, pollution returned to near-normal levels.
In total, the UK released 330 million tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, a 35 million-tonne decrease from the previous year.
In the United Kingdom, transportation is the largest source of carbon emissions, accounting for more than a third of total emissions. Emissions for passenger vehicles were down 22%, and for aviation, they were down 58 percent, as a result of various travel restrictions. In 2020, however, transportation remained the largest source of carbon emissions, accounting for 100 million tonnes.The data also indicate that the second national lockdown, which ran from November 5 to December 2, resulted in a much smaller reduction in overall emissions than the first. Businesses, in particular, retained almost the same degree of operation as during the summer months, suggesting that they had become more robust in the face of constraints and social distance.
The results indicate that once the virus is under control and all restrictions are lifted, the UK does not expect the reduction in emissions to last, according to Chloé Depigny, senior manager energy and utilities at Sia Partners.
She added: “People are going back to using their car faster than public transport. Businesses are making up leeway at pace and airlines are more than ready to resume operating their pre-pandemic schedule.
“Some ambitious commitments have been announced by the Government ahead of the COP26, but real actions are a long time coming and the government has still to demonstrate its ability to make the recovery green.”
Source: i News