Measuring ACT Emissions

Each year the ACT Government reports the Territory's greenhouse gas emissions in the greenhouse gas emissions inventory report. The latest report is the ACT GHG Emissions Inventory Report 2018-19.

The table below shows the change in ACT emissions from 1989-90 to 2018-19 and the ACT's 2020 emissions reduction target (to be achieved in 2019-20).

Table: Summary of ACT emissions over time and 2020 target (kilotonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent)

1989-902013-142014-152015-162016-172017-182018-192019-20 2020 Target
2940 388439803857 3678 3129 2568 Unavailable 1764

ACT emissions are decreasing

The estimate of total greenhouse gas emissions for the ACT in 2018-19 was 2568 kt CO2-e, an 18% decrease from the previous year.

In 2018-19 the ACT emitted 6.07 tonnes of CO2-e per person, a reduction from 7.52 tonnes CO2-e per person in 2017-18.

The ACT has succeeded in reaching its target of peaking per capital greenhouse gas emissions by 2013.

Current and projected emissions by sector

In 2018-19, transport accounted for 42% of ACT emissions, followed by electricity (31%), natural gas (14%), industrial processes (9%) and waste (3%).

From 2019-20, once the ACT's electricity supply is 100% renewable, most of our greenhouse gas emissions will be from transport (estimated at over 60%) and gas (over 20%).

Emissions from electricity

Achieving our target of 100% renewable electricity by 2020 will reduce emissions from electricity to zero from 2020 onwards. Although we have four solar farms within the ACT, most of the ACT's renewable electricity is generated outside the Territory under the innovative reverse auction, feed-in tariff program.

Because national greenhouse gas emissions factors for electricity (the amount of emissions produced in generating the electricity) are based on where the electricity generation takes place, the National Greenhouse Accounts Factor for New South Wales and ACT grid electricity, as published in the Australian National Greenhouse Accounts, does not reflect our renewable electricity success.

To address this, the ACT Government commissioned an Emissions factor projection report in 2017 to ensure our transition to renewable electricity is accurately reflected in reporting of emissions from electricity consumption. Canberrans can therefore see the emissions reductions associated with the renewable electricity they are supporting.

More information