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You are here: Home / Data and maps / Indicators / Emissions of primary PM2.5 and PM10 particulate matter / Emissions of primary PM2.5 and PM10 particulate matter (CSI 003/APE 009) - Assessment published Dec 2012

Emissions of primary PM2.5 and PM10 particulate matter (CSI 003/APE 009) - Assessment published Dec 2012

Generic metadata

Topics:

Air pollution Air pollution (Primary topic)

Environment and health Environment and health

Industry Industry

Tags:
soer2010 | csi | pm10 | particulate matter | pm2.5 | air emissions | pollution | emissions
DPSIR: Pressure
Typology: Performance indicator (Type B - Does it matter?)
Indicator codes
  • CSI 003
  • APE 009
Dynamic
Temporal coverage:
1990-2010
 
Contents
 

Key policy question: What progress is being made in reducing emissions of primary PM2.5 and PM10 particulate matter ?

Key messages

  • Total emissions of primary sub-10µm particulate matter (PM10) have reduced by 26% across the EEA-32 region between 1990 and 2010, driven by a 28% reduction in emissions of the fine particulate matter (PM2.5) fraction. Emissions of particulates between 2.5 and 10 µm have reduced by 21% over the same period; the difference of this trend to that of PM2.5 is due to significantly increased emissions in the 2.5 to 10 µm fraction from 'Road transport' and 'Agriculture' (of 50% and 15% respectively) since 1990.
  • Of this reduction in PM10 emissions, 39% has taken place in the 'Energy Production and Distribution' sector due to factors including the fuel-switching from coal to natural gas for electricity generation and improvements in the performance of pollution abatement equipment installed at industrial facilities.

Emissions of primary PM2.5 and PM10 particulate matter (EEA member countries)

Note: This chart shows past emission trends of primary PM2.5 and PM10 particulate matter, 1990-2010. The EU-27 2020 Gothenburg emission target is also depicted in the chart.

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Percentage change in PM2.5 and PM10 emissions 1990-2010 (EEA member countries)

Note: The reported change in primary PM2.5 and PM10 particulate matter for each country, 1990-2010. The EU27 2020 Gothenburg national emission ceilings are also depicted in the chart.

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Key assessment

Annual emissions of primary PM10 have reduced by 26% across the EEA-32 region between 1990 and 2010 (Figure 1), with significant reductions having occurred within most individual countries (Figure 2). The largest reductions have been reported by Slovakia (62%), the United Kingdom (59%) and Belgium (58%). In contrast emissions have increased in seven countries since 1990; the greatest increases have been reported in Finland (175%), Romania (88%) and Latvia (71%).

Data reported by Finland for years prior to 2000 does not include a number of sectors included in post-2000 data, and there is therefore a sharp rise in emissions between 1999 and 2000, after which emissions have remained approximately constant. In Latvia emissions from residential combustion have increased by 65% since 1990, contributing 63% of the increase in the national total over the same period. Similarly the rise in emissions in Romania is due chiefly to emissions from residential combustion sources, which have increased by 16% per year on average since 1990 such that emissions reported for 2010 were 20 times higher than for 1990.

The reductions in total emissions of primary PM10 between 1990 and 2010 have been mainly due to the introduction or improvement of abatement measures across the energy, road transport, and industrial sectors coupled with other developments in industrial sectors such as fuel switching from high-sulphur fuels to low-sulphur fuels, which has also contributed to decreased formation of secondary particulate matter from SO2 in the atmosphere. Emissions of primary PM10 are expected to decrease in the future as vehicle technologies are further improved and stationary fuel combustion emissions are controlled through abatement or use of low-sulphur fuels such as natural gas. Despite this, it is expected that within many of the urban areas across the EU, PM10 concentrations will still be well above the EU air quality limit value. Substantial further reductions in emissions will therefore be needed if the limit value set in the EU's Air Quality Directive is to be reached.

The 2012 revision of the Gothenburg Protocol to the UNECE LRTAP Convention set emission reduction targets for PM2.5 based on 2005 emission totals, to be met by countries in or before 2020. The EEA group of countries as a whole is on track towards achieving the total reduction target implied by the protocol. By 2010, average annual reductions of PM2.5 emissions in 13 EEA-32 countries were greater than that required to achieve their targets by 2020, and five countries had already achieved the reductions specified in the protocol.

Of the remaining 14 EEA-32 countries with targets under the protocol, five reported 2010 emissions which were above a linear target path to their 2020 targets by more than 20% of their 2005 emission totals. Additional measures may therefore need to be undertaken in future years in these countries (Slovenia, Estonia, Finland, Romania and Lithuania) if 2020 emission reduction targets are to be achieved.

There are no specific EU emission targets for primary PM10. However the EU National Emission Ceilings Directive (NECD) and the Gothenburg Protocol to the UNECE LRTAP Convention both set ceilings (i.e. limits) for the secondary particulate matter precursors NH3, NOX and SO2 that countries must have met by 2010[1]. Further details concerning these pollutants may be found in the indicator fact sheet CSI001 (Emissions of acidifying substances) with additional details concerning the individual secondary particulate matter precursor pollutants available in the following indicator fact sheets:

[1] The NECD and Gothenburg protocol also set an emission ceiling for total emissions of non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOC) which contribute to ground-level ozone formation.

Specific policy question: How do different sectors and processes contribute to emissions of PM2.5 and PM10?

Sector contributions of emissions of primary particulate matter in 2010 (EEA member countries)

Note: The contribution made by different sectors to emissions of primary PM2.5 and PM10 in 2010.

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Change in PM2.5 emissions for each sector and pollutant 1990-2010 (EEA member countries)

Note: Percentage change in primary PM2.5 particulate matter emissions for each sector and pollutant between 1990 and 2010.

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Change in PM10 emissions for each sector and pollutant between 1990 and 2010 (EEA member countries)

Note: Percentage change in primary PM10 particulate matter emissions for each sector and pollutant between 1990 and 2010.

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Contribution to total change in PM2.5 emissions for each sector between 1990 and 2010 (EEA member countries)

Note: The contribution made by each sector to the total change in primary PM2.5 particulate matter emissions between 1990 and 2010.

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Contribution to total change in PM10 emissions for each sector between 1990 and 2010 (EEA member countries)

Note: The contribution made by each sector to the total change in primary PM10 particulate matter emission between 1990 and 2010.

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Specific assessment

The most important sources of primary PM10 emissions in 2010, across the EEA-32 region, were the sectors 'Commercial, institutional and households' (42% of total emissions), 'Industrial processes' (15%), 'Road transport' (14%) and 'Agriculture' (10%). The 'Commercial, institutional and households' sector includes combustion-related emissions from sources such as heating of residential and commercial properties.

Emissions of primary PM10 from most sectors have decreased from 1990 to 2010 (Figure 5), with the exception of the 'Agriculture', 'Other', 'Non-road transport' and 'Commercial, institutional and households' sectors, in which emissions have risen by 9.2%, 8.5%, 3.0% and 0.6% respectively.

Since 1990, emissions from the combustion-related sectors 'Energy production and distribution', 'Energy use in industry' and 'Road Transport' have reduced particularly significantly, contributing 39%, 25% and 20% respectively of the total reduction in sub-10μm particulate matter emissions (Figure 7). As described in the main assessment, a combination of factors has contributed to the reduction of both primary PM10 and secondary particulate matter emissions in these sectors between 1990 and 2010. These include for primary PM10;

  • improvements in the performance of particulate abatement equipment at industrial combustion facilities, e.g. coal-fired power stations;
  • since the early 1990s, a fuel shift from the use of coal in the energy industries, industrial and domestic sectors to cleaner burning fuels such as gas;
  • cleaner stoves for domestic heating;
  • introduction of particle filters on new vehicles (driven by the legislative Euro standards);

and for the secondary particulate matter precursors;

  • fuel switching from high-sulphur solid (e.g. coal) and liquid (e.g. heavy fuel oil) fuels to low sulphur fuels (such as natural gas) for power and heat production purposes within the energy industries, industry and domestic sectors;
  • the impact of European Union directives relating to the sulphur content of certain liquid fuels;
  • the introduction of flue-gas abatement techniques (e.g. flue gas desulphurisation, NOX scrubbers and selective catalytic and non-catalytic reduction, i.e. SCR and SNCR) and introduction of combustion modification technologies (such as use of low NOX burners);
  • the introduction of three way catalytic converters for petrol-fuelled cars (driven by the legislative Euro standards);
  • the introduction of exhaust particle traps for diesel HGVs to meet emission standards EURO V.

Data sources

More information about this indicator

See this indicator specification for more details.

Contacts and ownership

EEA Contact Info

Martin Adams

Ownership

EEA Management Plan

2012 1.1.2 (note: EEA internal system)

Dates

Frequency of updates

Updates are scheduled every 1 year in October-December (Q4)
European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100