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Earth Day in Slovenia

Our planet is celebrating the Earth Day for the 50th consecutive year. The main theme of this year's global event is Climate Action. Climate changes are considered to be the most important challenge for humanity's future and for preserving the conditions that make live on this planet possible.

Slovenia is green and sustainable oriented country. Almost two thirds of its territory is covered by forests and climate concerns are of great interest of Slovenia. Even that much that the Slovenian word of the year 2019 is "podnebje" or climate as the Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (ZRC SAZU) announced in January this year. The word "climate" has been selected as the expression that made the most waves last year.

On the occasion of the Earth Day the Statistical Office (SURS) highlighted some data on greenhouse gas emissions, which are considered to be the main cause of climate change.

Greenhouse gas emissions are, according to experts, the main reason for climate changes, the effects of which are already visible. In Slovenia, about 20,000 kilotons (kt) of CO2 equivalent emissions are emitted every year; most of them derive from manufacturing and service activities (around 80%), while about 20% are emitted from households. During the economic crisis, in the years after 2008, greenhouse gas emissions were gradually declining until 2014, when they began to increase again.

There are several greenhouse gasses, with CO2 being the most known one. The other most common greenhouse gasses are methane (CH4 ), dinitrous oxide (N2O) and gasses from the F-gas group (HFC, PFC, SF6 ). The listed greenhouse gasses have different greenhouse effects: 1 unit of CH4 has a 25-times higher greenhouse effect than 1 unit of CO2 , 1 unit of N2O has a 298-times higher greenhouse effect than 1 unit of CO2 and some F-gasses have several 1000-times higher greenhouse effect than CO2. Data are therefore mostly calculated and expressed in CO2 equivalent. However, even after those calculations, the share of CO2 in all greenhouse gas emissions is still the largest, according to SURS.

In the European Union Member States emitted 4.6 million kilotons of CO2 equivalent in 2017, which is approximately 8.9 tons (t) per capita.  In 2017 greenhouse gas emissions per capita were the highest in Luxembourg (16.7 tons) and the lowest in Croatia (6 tons). In Slovenia 9.2 tons of CO2 equivalent per capita was emitted into the air in 2017.

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Source: SURS

Author: Polona Prešeren

Date: 22. April 2020

Time to read: 3 min