Press Release

Japan's National Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Fiscal Year 2020 (Final Figures)

April 14, 2022

The Ministry of the Environment and the National Institute for Environmental Studies have released Japan's National Greenhouse Gas Emissions (final figures1) for fiscal year (FY) 2020.

Total greenhouse gas emissions2 in FY2020 were 1,150 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (Mt CO2 eq.), down 5.1% compared to FY2019.

Removals by forests and other carbon sink measures in FY2020 were 44.5 Mt CO2 eq. The subtraction of Japan's removals by forests and other carbon sink measures from the total GHG emissions yielded 1,106 Mt CO2 eq. (a decrease by 60 Mt CO2 eq. from FY2019), reflecting a 21.5% (303.6 Mt CO2 eq.) decrease compared to the total GHG emissions in FY2013.

The main factor for the decrease in emissions as compared to FY2019 is the reduced energy consumption due to reduced production in manufacturing industries and decrease in the amount of passenger and freight traffic, etc., resulting from the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Note: Japan's fiscal year runs from April 1 to March 31.

Under Articles 4 and 12 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (hereinafter, the Convention) and relevant decisions adopted by the Conference of the Parties, the Annex I parties including Japan (i.e., developed countries) are required to prepare national greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories and submit them to the Secretariat of the Convention. Moreover, Article 7 of the Act on Promotion of Global Warming Countermeasures, which provides for domestic measures under the Convention, requires the Government of Japan to annually estimate and make public Japan's GHG emissions and removals.

In accordance with these Articles, Japan's GHG emissions in FY2020 were estimated.

Japan's total GHG emissions in FY2020 were 1,150 Mt CO2 eq.

This reflects a decrease of 5.1% (62 Mt CO2 eq.) compared to FY2019 emissions (1,212 Mt CO2 eq.). The main factor for the decrease in emissions in FY2020 as compared to FY2019 is the reduced energy consumption due to reduced production in manufacturing industries and decrease in the amount of passenger and freight traffic, etc., resulting from the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

This also shows a decrease of 18.4% (259 Mt CO2 eq.) compared to FY2013 emissions (1,409 Mt CO2 eq.). The two main factors for the decrease in emissions in FY2020 as compared to FY2013 are the reduced energy consumption (due to improved energy conservation, the effects of the spread of COVID-19, etc.) and the decrease in CO2 emissions from electricity production due to the wider use of low-carbon electricity (wider adoption of renewable energy, resumption of nuclear power plant operations).

In contrast, the emissions of hydrofluorocarbons that substitute ozone-depleting substances as refrigerants are increasing every year.

Removals by forests and other carbon sink measures in FY2020 were 44.5 Mt CO2 eq., consisting of 40.5 Mt CO2 eq. by forest carbon sink measures, 2.7 Mt CO2 eq. by carbon sink measures for agricultural soils, and 1.3 Mt CO2 eq. by promotion of revegetation.

The subtraction of Japan's removals by forests and other carbon sink measures from the total GHG emissions yielded 1,106 Mt CO2 eq. (a decrease by 60 Mt CO2 eq. from FY2019), reflecting a 21.5% (303.6 Mt CO2 eq.) decrease compared to the total GHG emissions in FY2013.

Footnote:

1. "Final figures" refers to the figures officially submitted to the Secretariat of the Convention as Japan's GHG emissions and removals in the national GHG inventory. The final figures compiled this time may be recalculated when annual statistical data are updated, and/or estimation methods are revised.

2. There are some differences between the final figures compiled this time and the preliminary figures released on December 10, 2021, due to recalculations conducted based on annual statistical data made available after the preliminary estimation, and further revision of estimation methods. The preliminary figures for GHG emissions in FY2020 were 1,149 Mt CO2 eq., showing a 5.1% decrease compared to FY2019 (an 18.4% decrease compared to FY2013).

Ministry of the Environment

Government of Japan

Greenhouse Gas Inventory Office of Japan

National Institute for Environmental Studies

For Japanese

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