UK – climate and energy statistics

UKTotal national greenhouse gas emissions

2% as a percentage of the global total (at 2004 figures).

Historical contribution – 1850 to 2000


Change in annual greenhouse gas emissions since 1990 (including land use change)


2005 per capita annual greenhouse gas emissions

11 tonnes

Energy used per unit of GDP (compared to USA)


2008 balance of energy sources

Gas 40.5
Oil 32.5
Coal 17
Nuclear 6.5
Renewables 2.5

Energy security

The UK is currently self-sufficient in oil, although its oil reserves will be depleted either in the next decade or soon after.

It currently imports 12% of its gas, although this is expected to rise quickly as gas reserves will also soon be deleted.

Three quarters of the coal used in the UK is now imported, despite the UK having extensive coal reserves.

Renewables – the UK has Europe’s best wind resources. It also has enormous wave and tidal potential.

Electricity generated in 2008


Gas 45.5
Coal 32.5
Nuclear 13.5
Hydro 2.5
Biomass 2
Wind 1.8
Oil 1.5

Electricity – supply and demand

Demand was growing slowly before the recession of 2009. The main challenge in the UK is that many existing coal and nuclear stations will close before 2020 – the coal ones because of the EU Large Combustion Plants Directive (which regulates sulphur and nitrogen dioxide emissions) and the nuclear ones because of age.

Fuels used for heat, 2008

Fuel %
Gas 83.5
Coal 14
Oil 2.5


Percentage of agriculture certified as organic, 2006


Cars per thousand of population



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