Finland often boasts of being the country in the world with the cleanest air and the purest natural spaces. In fact, any visitor can verify that the country enjoys an enviable natural wealth. However, not everything in environmental matters evolves in the right direction in the country, according to the latest data published by the European Union (EU).
The European statistical office (Eurostat) has just published its early estimates of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions for energy use in the 28 EU member states in 2018, and Finland does not look very good in this ranking.
In fact, Finland is one of the eight EU member states where CO2 emissions increased (+1.9%). This has occurred in a general context of decreases within the European Union, where emissions fell by an average of -2.5% in 2018 compared to the previous year.
Finland´s share of EU total CO2 emissions in 2018 was 1.3%
Eurostat emphasizes in a press release on the issue that CO2 is "a major contributor to global warming and account for around 80% of all EU greenhouse gas emissions". Their evolution is influenced by factors such as climatic conditions, economic growth, the population size, transport and industrial activities.
Largest falls in Portugal and Bulgaria
According to Eurostat estimates, CO2 emissions fell in 2018 in a majority of the EU member states, with the highest decreases being recorded in Portugal (-9%), followed by Bulgaria (-8.1%), Ireland (-6.8%), Germany (-5.4%), the Netherlands (-4.6%) and Croatia (-4.3%).
Increases were registered in eight member states: Latvia (+8.5%), ahead of Malta (+6.7%), Estonia (+4.5%), Luxembourg (+3.7%), Poland (+3.5%), Slovakia (+2.4%), Finland (+1.9%) and Lithuania (+0.6%).
The European statistical office stressed also that imports and exports of energy products have an impact on CO2 emissions in the country where fossil fuels are burned: for example, if coal is imported this leads to an increase in emissions, while if electricity is imported, it has no direct effect on emissions in the importing country, as these would be reported in the exporting country where it is produced.