You are here: Home / Data and maps / Indicators / Energy-related emissions of particulate matter

Energy-related emissions of particulate matter

Indicator Specificationexpired Created 08 Jul 2011 Published 10 Aug 2011 Last modified 04 Sep 2015, 07:00 PM
Topics: , ,
This content has been archived on 12 Nov 2013, reason: Content not regularly updated
Indicator codes: ENER 007
Required information is not filled in: Information about the starting date of the publishing schedule is missing.

Assessment versions

Published (reviewed and quality assured)
  • No published assessments


Justification for indicator selection

Energy-related emissions of primary PM10 (i.e. particulate matter with a diameter of 10μm or less, emitted directly into the atmosphere), and secondary PM10 precursors (the fraction of NOx, SO2, and NH3 emissions which, as a result of photo-chemical reactions in the atmosphere, transform into particulate matter with a diameter of 10 μm or less), contribute to elevated levels of fine particles in the atmosphere. The inhalation of such particles has harmful effects on human health and may increase the frequency and severity of a number of respiratory problems, which may increase the risk of premature death.


Energy-related emissions of primary PM10 and PM2.5[1], contribute to elevated levels of fine particles in the atmosphere. The inhalation of such particles has harmful effects on human health and may increase the frequency and severity of a number of respiratory problems and increase the risk of premature deaths. Reducing  emissions of particulate matter will therefore result in improved human health condition. In addition, some primary particulate matter such as black carbon contribute to increased radiative forcing, therefore reducing the emission levels of these particles will also contribute to climate change mitigation.

[1] PM10 definition according to article 2 (18) (DIRECTIVE 2008/50/EC OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 21 May 2008 on ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe, Official Journal L 152 , 11/06/2008 P. 5 ): "PM10” shall mean particulate matter which passes through a size-selective inlet as defined in the reference method for the sampling and measurement of PM10, EN 12341, with a 50 % efficiency cut-off at 10 μm aerodynamic diameter;.


Scientific references

  • No rationale references available

Indicator definition

Combination of primary PM10 and PM2.5 emission data.


PM10 definition: "PM10" shall mean particulate matter which passes through a size-selective inlet with a 50 % efficiency cut-off at 10 μm aerodynamic diameter (Air Quality Framework Directive, first Daughter Directive, article 2 (11) - (Council Directive 1999/30/EC of 22 April 1999 relating to limit values for sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and oxides of nitrogen, particulate matter and lead in ambient air, Official Journal L 163 , 29/06/1999 P. 0041 - 0060):


PM10 emission in kt

Policy context and targets

Context description

Levels of fine particulate matter and precursor emissions are controlled in the European Union by 3 main types of regulation:

  • Air quality standards.
  • Emission standards for specific (mobile or stationary) sources.
  • National emission ceilings and transboundary air pollution standards for emission precursors.

There are no direct emission limits or targets for primary PM10 within the European Union, although there are limits on emissions of the precursor pollutants NOx, SO2 and NH3. Limit values for the concentration of PM10 are set under EU Directive 99/30/EC relating to ambient air quality assessment and management (European Commission 1999).

Several EU-wide limits and targets exist for the reduction of SO2, NOx and NH3 emissions, including the National Emissions Ceiling (NEC) Directive (2001/81/EC) and the Gothenburg Protocol of the UNECE LRTAP Convention (UNECE 1999). These are discussed further in factsheet EN06. As part of the review of the NEC Directive that is currently taking place, the feasibility of introducing national emission ceiling targets for particulate matter is being investigated. A proposal for the revised directive is expected in 2013.


There are no specific EU emission targets for primary PM10. However, emissions of the precursors NOx, SOx and NH3 are covered by the NECD and the Gothenburg Protocol to the UNECE LRTAP Convention. Both instruments contain emission ceilings (limits) that countries must meet by 2010.

See also indicators CSI 003:



Related policy documents

  • Directive 2001/81/EC, national emission ceilings
    Directive 2001/81/EC, on nation al emissions ceilings (NECD) for certain atmospheric pollutants. Emission reduction targets for the new EU10 Member States have been specified in the Treaty of Accession to the European Union 2003  [The Treaty of Accession 2003 of the Czech Republic, Estonia, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Malta, Poland, Slovenia and Slovakia. AA2003/ACT/Annex II/en 2072] in order that they can comply with the NECD.
  • UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution
    UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution.


Methodology for indicator calculation

Indicator is based on officially reported national total and sectoral emissions to UNECE/EMEP (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe/Co-operative programme for monitoring and evaluation of the long-range transmission of air pollutants in Europe) Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (LRTAP Convention), submission 2010. Recommended methodologies for emission inventory estimation are compiled in the EMEP/CORINAIR Atmospheric Emission Inventory guidebook, EEA Copenhagen (EEA, 2009). Base data are available from the EEA Data Service ( and the EMEP web site ( Where necessary, gaps in reported data are filled by ETC/ACC using simple interpolation techniques (see below). The final gap-filled data used in this indicator is available from the EEA Data Service (

Base data, reported in NFR are aggregated into the following EEA sector codes to obtain a common reporting format across all countries and pollutants:

  • Energy Industries: emissions from public heat and electricity generation, oil refining,  production of solid fuels, extraction and distribution of solid fossil fuels and geothermal energy;
  • Industrial processes: emissions derived from non-combustion related processes such as the production of minerals, chemicals and metal production;
  • Road transport: light and heavy duty vehicles, passenger cars and motorcycles;
  • Non-road (other) transport: railways, domestic shipping, certain aircraft movements, and non-road mobile machinery used in agriculture & forestry;
  • Household and services: emissions principally occurring from fuel combustion in the services and household sectors;
  • Manufacturing and Constructions: emissions from combustion processes used in the manufacturing industry including boilers, gas turbines and stationary engines;
  • Other non-energy (Solvent and product use): non-combustion related emissions mainly in the services and households sectors including activities such as paint application, dry-cleaning and other use of solvents;
  • Agriculture: manure management, fertiliser application, field-burning of agricultural wastes
  • Waste: incineration, waste-water management;

The following table shows the conversion of Nomenclature for Reporting (NFR) sector codes used for reporting by countries into EEA sector codes:

EEA classification

Non-GHGs (NFR)


National totals

National total

National totals without LUCF

Energy Industries



Fugitive emissions

1B1, 1B2


Road transport



Non-road transport (non-road mobile machinery)

1A3 (exl 1A3b)

1A3a, 1A3c, 1A3d, 1A3e

Industrial processes



Other non-energy (Solvent and product use)

3, 7A








Household and services

1A4ai, 1A4aii, 1A4bi, 1A5a

1A4A, 1A4B

Manufacturing / Construction



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.

Data specifications

EEA data references

Data sources in latest figures


Methodology uncertainty

Officially reported data following agreed procedures and Emission Inventory Guidebook (EEA 2009) Primary PM10 data reported by countries remains uncertain in terms of quality for many countries. In many cases the available reported data does not include all years.

Data sets uncertainty

The reported primary PM10 data is likely to be very uncertain. Much of the uncertainty in the overall reported PM10 emissions comes from uncertainties associated with emission factors. For many countries there is little country-specific data available from which PM10 emission factors can be determined. Emission factors in the literature can be very variable due to the differences that occur between sector processes both within and between different countries. For many countries a complete time series of PM10 data is not available from 1990, and so significant interpolation and extrapolation has had to be performed to obtain a complete time series of data. Similarly not all countries report emissions from every sector. In contrast, the uncertainties of sulphur dioxide emission estimates in Europe are relatively low, as the sulphur emitted comes from the fuel burnt and therefore can be accurately estimated. However, because of the need for interpolation to account for missing data the complete dataset used here will have higher uncertainty. EMEP has compared modelled (which include emission data as one of the model parameters) and measured concentrations throughout Europe (EMEP 2005). From these studies the uncertainties associated with the modelled annual averages for a specific point in time have been estimated in the order of ±30 %. This is consistent with an inventory uncertainty of ±10 % (with additional uncertainties arising from the other model parameters, modelling methodologies, and the air quality measurement data etc). NOx emission estimates in Europe are thought to have higher uncertainty than pollutants such as SO2, as the NOx emitted comes both from the fuel burnt and the combustion air and so cannot be estimated accurately from fuel nitrogen alone. EMEP has compared modelled and measured concentrations throughout Europe (EMEP 2005). From these studies differences for individual monitoring stations of more than a factor of two have been found. This is consistent with an inventory of national annual emissions having an uncertainty of ±30% or greater (there are also uncertainties in the air quality measurements and especially the modelling). The trend is likely to be much more accurate than for individual absolute annual values; the annual values are not independent of each other. However it is not clear that all countries backdate changes to methodologies so early years may have been estimated on a different basis to later years.

Rationale uncertainty

No uncertainty has been specified

Further work

Short term work

Work specified here requires to be completed within 1 year from now.

Long term work

Work specified here will require more than 1 year (from now) to be completed.

General metadata

Responsibility and ownership

EEA Contact Info

Anca-Diana Barbu


European Environment Agency (EEA)


Indicator code
ENER 007
Version id: 3
Primary theme: Energy Energy


Permalink to this version
Permalink to latest version


DPSIR: Pressure
Typology: Descriptive indicator (Type A - What is happening to the environment and to humans?)
European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Phone: +45 3336 7100