Norway’s greenhouse gas emissions rise, despite promised cuts

A general view of the Klemetsrud incinerator in Oslo, Norway, January 25, 2016. REUTERS/Alister Doyle
A general view of the Klemetsrud incinerator in Oslo, Norway, January 25, 2016. REUTERS/Alister Doyle

Norway’s greenhouse gas emissions rose by 1.5 percent last year, lifted by the oil and gas sector and industry, making it harder for Oslo to keep promises of deep cuts to limit global warming, official data showed yesterday.

Emissions rose to the equivalent of 53.9 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from 53.2 million in 2014, breaking several years of declines, and were above the 51.9 million in the benchmark year of 1990, preliminary Statistics Norway data showed.

In the oil and gas sector, BG Group’s new Knarr oilfield added most to emissions in 2015.

The rise makes the climate goals of the right-wing government’s ever tougher. Last year, Oslo said it would cut emissions by at least 40 percent by 2030 from 1990 levels as part of a U.N. agreement on climate change reached in Paris in December.

Many opposition politicians say the powerful oil and gas sector too often gets priority. Norway has often bought emissions quotas abroad to make up for a lack of progress in cutting domestic emissions.

On Wednesday, Norway awarded 10 oil licences to energy companies in the Arctic, opening new acreage for exploration for the first time in two decades.

(Reuters)