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APE_F02: Emissions of acidifying substances - outlook from WBCSD (Outlook 018) - Assessment published Jun 2007

Indicator Assessmentexpired Created 08 Jan 2007 Published 08 Jun 2007 Last modified 12 Nov 2013, 09:02 AM
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Contents
 

Indicator definition

Definition: In general, the indicator 'emissions of acidifying pollutants' tracks trends in anthropogenic emissions of acidifying substances such as nitrogen oxides, ammonia, and sulphur dioxide, each weighted by their acidifying potential.
Outlook form IEA/SMP model provides information only for emissions of nitrogen oxides from transport sector.

Model used: IEA/SMP

Ownership:  World Business Council for Sustainable Development 

Temporal coverage: 1990 - 2050

Geographical coverage: OECD Europe: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom; OECD North America: USA, Canada, Mexico; Former Soviet Union: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Republic of Moldova, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan
Eastern Europe: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Serbia and Montenegro; India; China

Units

The indicator is measured in thousand tonnes of NOx per year.


Key policy question: What are prospects in reducing emissions of acidifying pollutants across Europe?

Key messages

In developed countries efforts have been underway for decades to reduce acidifying substances (NOx). There is a progress in reducing total NOx. Emissions per vehicle kilometer for light-duty vehicles have been substantially reduced. But growth in transport activity and problems in controlling in-use emissions have tended to offset some of the hoped-for improvements.

The situation regarding acidifying substances in the transition countries (EECCA and SEE) (especially its rapidly-growing urbanized areas) is somewhat different. Although NOx is expected to be reduced it will not happen as easily or as quickly as desired.

Emissions of NOx from road transport from 2000 to 2050

Note: road transport include light-duty vehicles, freight trucks, buses, and 2-3 wheelers

Downloads and more info

Key assessment

In developed countries it now appears that the efforts to curtail the total volume of emissions of the remaining transport-related "conventional" pollutants are bearing fruit. Much tighter vehicle emissions standards have been enacted, and the equipment to support them is being installed on new vehicles. The cleaner fuels required to permit this equipment to operate effectively are being produced and made widely available, at least in the developed world. For these reasons, it reasonable to project sharp reductions in the emissions of these "conventional" pollutants given policies now in place (or about to be implemented) in most developed countries.

The situation regarding acidifying substances (NOx) in the transition countries of EECCA and SEE (especially its rapidly-growing urbanized areas) is somewhat different. NOx emissions will not be reduced as easily or as quickly. Transport activity is projected to grow much more rapidly than in the developed world. And the rate of introduction of vehicle pollution control technology and the necessary related fuels in developing countries lags considerably behind that in developed countries. In the reference scenario, this lag is projected to continue but not worsen. It is assumed that assuring compliance with pollution control standards may prove more difficult in transition countries than developed countries.

It is expected that total emissions of most conventional pollutants will be reduced less rapidly, certainly for the next few decades and perhaps longer, before eventually declining.

The main reason of the decreasing amount of NOx emissions appeared from the implementations of the strict standards and controls required by the accessed EU emission sectoral legislation and accordingly to the main policy, which addressed air pollution issues in Europe, the National emission ceilings directive. While temporary increasing of NOx emissions in countries with transition economies are caused by increasing economical growth and, therefore, transport activity in the region.

Data sources

Policy context and targets

Context description

Pan-European policy context

At the Pan-European level this indicators is related to the implementation of the 1999 Gothenburg Protocol to Abate Acidification, Eutrophication and Ground-level Ozone. The Protocol sets emission ceilings for 2010 for four pollutants: sulphur, NOx, VOCs and ammonia. These ceilings were negotiated on the basis of scientific assessments of pollution effects and abatement options. Parties whose emissions have a more severe environmental or health impact and whose emissions are relatively cheap to reduce will have to make the biggest cuts.

EU policy context

 

Emission ceiling targets for NOx and SO2 are specified in both the EU National Emission Ceilings Directive (NECD) and the Gothenburg protocol under the United Nations Convention on long-range transboundary air pollution (LRTAP Convention) (UNECE 1999. Emission reduction targets for the new EU-10 Member States have been specified in a consolidated version of the NECD for the EU-25 [1] which was adopted by the European Community after the accession of the EU-10 Member. In addition, the consolidated NECD also includes emission ceilings for Bulgaria and Romania whose targets have been defined in their respective Accession treaties [2].

[1] Directive 2001/81/EC, on national emissions ceilings (NECD) for certain atmospheric pollutants. (consolidated version)

[2] National emission ceilings for SO2, NOx, VOC and NH3, to be obtained by 2010.

EECCA policy context

Most of the EECCA countries ratified the 1979 Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. These are A list of countries ratified the 1979 Convention: Armenia (1997), Azerbajan (2002), Belarus (1980), Georgia (1999), Kazakhstan (2001), Kyrgyzstan (2000), Republic of Moldova (1995), Russian Federation (1980), the Ukraine (1980).

At the same time only two of them signed in the Gothenburg Protocol to abate acidification, eutrophication and ground-level ozone, notably Armenia (1999), Republic of Moldova (2000).

Targets

Pan-European level

Once the Gothenburg Protocol is fully implemented, Europe's sulphur emissions should be cut by at least 63%, NOx emissions by 41% and its ammonia emissions by 17% compared to 1990.

The Protocol also sets tight limit values for specific emission sources (e.g. combustion plant, electricity production, dry cleaning, cars and lorries) and requires best available techniques to be used to keep emissions down. Guidance documents adopted together with the Protocol provide a wide range of abatement techniques and economic instruments for the reduction of emissions in the relevant sectors, including transport.

EU level

Emissions of NOx and SO2 are covered by the EU National Emission Ceilings Directive (NECD) (2001/81/EC) and the Gothenburg protocol under the United Nations Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution (LRTAP Convention) (UNECE 1999).

The NECD generally involves slightly stricter emission reduction targets than the Gothenburg Protocol for EU-15 countries for the period 1990-2010. Specific tagrets can be viewed at the outlook APE-01 - Emissions of Acidifying Pollutants from LRTAP.

EECCA level
No specific targets at the sub-regional level are set.

Related policy documents

Methodology

Methodology for indicator calculation

Outlook of NOx emissions from transport sector was calculated based on the IEA/SMP model developed by the International Energy Agency and World business council fo Sustainable Development in the framework of the Sustainable Mobility project. They are calculated as a function of projection of vehicle sales, stocks and travel.

Overview of the SMP Spreadsheet Model

(The flowchart on the page 4 of the  IEA/SMP model spreadsheet privides an example of the logic behind the model on the basis of light-duty vehicles(e.g. automobiles)).
The IEA/SMP Transport Spreadsheet Model is designed to handle all transport modes and most vehicle types. It produces projections of vehicle stocks, travel, energy use and other indicators through 2050 for a reference case and for various policy cases and scenarios. It is designed to have some technology-oriented detail and to allow fairly detailed bottom-up modeling. The SMP spreadsheet model 1.60 is the most recent version and is available for a more detailed inspection (and use, though no user guide has been prepared and there are no plans, at this time, of providing on-going usersupport for the model. A very basic outline of how to use the model is provided in the first sheet of the model spreadsheet).
The model does not include any representation of economic relationships (e.g., elasticities) nor does it track costs. Rather, it is an "accounting" model, anchored by the "ASIF" identity:

  • Activity (passenger and freight travel)
  • Structure (travel shares by mode and vehicle type)
  • Intensity (fuel efficiency)
  • Fuel type = fuel use by fuel type (and CO2 emissions per unit fuel use).

Various indicators are tracked and characterized by coefficients per unit travel, per vehicle or per unit fuel use as appropriate.
The modes, technologies, fuels, regions and basic variables are included in the spreadsheet model. Not all technologies or variables are covered for all modes. Apart from energy use, the model tracks emissions of CO2, and CO2-equivalent GHG emissions (from vehicles as well as upstream), PM, NOx, HC, CO and Pb. Projections of safety (fatalities and injuries) are also incorporated.
The most detailed segment of the model covers light-duty vehicles. The flow chart  on the page 4 of the  Model Documentation provides an overview of the key linkages in the light-duty vehicle section of the model. For other passenger modes (such as buses, 2-wheelers), the approach is similar, however there is no stock model. Stocks are projected directly; vehicle sales needed to achieve these stocks is not currently tracked.
Overview of the projections, regions and viraibales used by the IEA/SMP transport spreadsheet model is peresented in the table below:

Sectors / Modes
Vehicle
Technologies/
Fuels
Regions
Variables

-Light-duty
vehicles (cars, minivans,
SUVs)
-Medium trucks
-Heavy-duty (long-haul)
trucks
-Mini-buses ("paratransit")
-Large buses
-2-3 wheelers
-Aviation (Domestic +
Int'l)
-Rail freight
-Rail passenger
-National waterborne
(Inland plus coastal)
-Int'l shipping

-Internal combustion engine:
-Gasoline
-Diesel
-LPG-CNG
-Ethanol
-Biodiesel
-Hybrid-
Electric ICE (same fuels)
-Fuel-cell vehicle
-Hydrogen
(With feedstock
differentiation for biofuels
and hydrogen)

-OECD Europe
-OECD North
America
-OECD Pacific
(Japan, Korea,
Australia, NZ)
-Former Soviet
Union (FSU)
-Eastern Europe
-Middle East
-China
-India
-Other Asia
-Latin America
-Africa

Passenger kilometres
of travel
-Vehicle sales (LDVs
only)
-Vehicle stocks
-Average vehicle fuelefficiency
-Vehicle travel
-Fuel use
-CO2 emissions
-Pollutant emissions
(PM, NOx, HC, CO,
Pb)
-Safety (road fatalities
and injuries)

Key model assumptions for the reference case

The reference case projects one possible set of future conditions, based on recent trends in various important indicators and other variables. Adjustments are made for expected deviations from recent trends due to factors such as existing policies, population projections, income projections and expected availability of new technologies. Expectations for other future changes in trends, such as saturations in vehicle ownership, are also incorporated.

In general, no major new policies are assumed to be implemented beyond those already implemented in 2003. An exception to this is where there is clear evidence of what might be called "policy trajectories" - future policy actions that are either explicit or implicit in other trends. For example, a clear trend is emerging in the developing world to adopt vehicle emissions standards of a form similar to those already implemented in OECD countries. It is assumed that this "policy trajectory" will continue in the future. In contrast, no such policy trajectory is evident for reduced light-duty vehicle (LDV) fuel consumption; we therefore only incorporate existing fuel consumption programmes through the year they currently end; we assume a return after that date to historical (non-policy-driven) trends in fuel consumption.

In general, the model tried to avoid introducing significant changes in trends after 2030. We run the trends assumed to exist in 2030 out to 2050 in order to see the net effects and directions in that latter year of actions and events that often occurred years earlier.

For more infomation click here.

Calculation of emissions

The indicator's calculations are based on the data from the indicators from the IEA/SMP models such as averagein-use emissions and total energy use across sectors, fuel and regions; and have to take into account current and future emissions standards.

Pollutant emissions tracking was implemented in the model to allow the Sustainable Mobility Project to better understand the vehicle emissions trends that result from the projection of vehicle sales, stocks and travel. At a world regional average level of aggregation, there is no information in the model about where vehicles are traveling (e.g. urban v. rural) or how various emissions translate into atmospheric concentrations. The emissions trends are included to provide a general directional sense of whether total emissions from road vehicles increasing or decreasing over time. Five types of pollutants are tracked: nitrogen oxides (NOx), particulate matter (PM-10), carbon monoxide (CO), hydrocarbons (HC or VOC) and lead (Pb). Note that for lead, a different approach is used which is discussed after the other pollutants. Pollutant emissions tracking have been developed only for road vehicles - no tracking for rail, air or shipping.

The approach used for light-duty vehicles has been to rely primarily on existing tailpipe emissions standards for new vehicles around the world, and the announced plans for phase-in of future, generally tighter, standards. For the developing world, in cases where information on existing or planned future standards was unavailable, simple assumptions were made regarding adoption of standards similar to the EU system (EURO 1 through EURO 5) in the future, at a certain time-lag after these have been implemented in Europe.

For other road vehicles (2/3 wheelers, trucks and buses), since the model does not track new vehicles or stock turnover, but only the existing stock of vehicles, estimates are based on assumed average emissions across the vehicle stock, and evolution of this average.

 

Methodology for gap filling

No methodology for gap filling has been specified. Probably this info has been added together with indicator calculation.

Methodology references

No methodology references available.

Uncertainties

Methodology uncertainty

Uncertainties related to indicator calculation

All data should be based on movements on national territory, regardless of the nationality of the vehicle. It is unknown what the assumptions are regarding movement of the transport when the assigned regions.  

Uncertainties related to IEA/SMP transport model

The model does not include any representation of economic relationships (e.g.,
elasticities) nor does it track costs. The IEA has a cost-optimization model capable of this, the ETP model, but this model was not employed in the SMP's work due to its lack of transparency and its complexity.

Data sets uncertainty


The table below provides a simplified picture of what types of variables and the level of
detail modelled for each major transport mode in the IEA/SMP transport spreadsheet model. As can be seen in the next table, there is a range of coverage by mode, as well as variations in the quality of the data available (indicated by x or i). In general, there is better data available for light-duty vehicles than for other modes, though for non-OECD regions most data is quite poor, except for aggregate estimates of transport energy consumption. New vehicle characteristics are only tracked for light-duty vehicles; existing stock is used as the basic vehicle indicator for all other modes.

The reference case includes the modes and variables identified in the table below:

Modes and Variables Covered in the Reference Case Projection

 

   

 Auto

 Air
 Truck

 Frt
Rail
 Pass

rail
 Buss

 Mini-

bus
 2-3
wheel
 Water

 OECD regions
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   

Activity (passenger
or tonne km)

-

-

-

-

-

-

i

i

 

New vehicle
characteristics
(sales, fuel
consumption)

-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stock-average
energy intensity

-

-

-

-

-

-

i

i

 

Calculation of
energy use and
vehicle CO2
emissions

-

-

-

-

-

i

i

i

 

 Non-OECD regions
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   

Activity (passenger
or tonne km)

i

-

i

-

-

i

i

i

 

New vehicle
characteristics
(sales, fuel
consumption)

i

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stock-average
energy intensity

i

i

i

i

i

i

i

i

 

Calculation of
energy use and
vehicle CO2
emissions

i

-

i

-

-

i

i

i

-

Note: - = have data of fair to good reliability; i = have data but incomplete or of poor reliability; blank = have nothing or have not attempted to project. Note that data of fair reliability is available for energy use across all road vehicles in non-OECD countries, but breaking this out into various road modes (cars, trucks, buses, 2- wheelers) is difficult and relatively unreliable.
For more information click here.

Rationale uncertainty

No uncertainty has been specified

More information about this indicator

See this indicator specification for more details.

Generic metadata

Topics:

Environmental scenarios Environmental scenarios (Primary topic)

Tags:
energy | forward looking indicators
DPSIR: Pressure
Typology: Performance indicator (Type B - Does it matter?)
Indicator codes
  • Outlook 018
Geographic coverage:
Albania, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Kingdom

Contacts and ownership

EEA Contact Info

Anita Pirc Velkavrh

Ownership

EEA Management Plan

2010 (note: EEA internal system)

Dates

Comments

European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100