Carbon Knowledge

Energy Emissions – Since 1990

Between 1990 and 2014 New Zealand’s emissions from electricity rose 21%, representing the 2nd highest growth area of energy emissions over that period.

And our emissions are forecast to continue rising.  Check out the Ministry for the Environment Interactive website for more information here.

While our record of past performance is not looking good in the transport and electricity sector, the good news is that electricity and transport emissions can both be brought down rapidly and without cost to the economy.

In fact, Kiwis and Kiwi businesses will be saving greatly by moving to 100% renewable electricity and electric vehicles.

170321 NZ Emissions 2014a



Electricity Emissions – Preceding 12 Months

The following graph shows the amount of CO2e emitted per kWh of electricity.

This is calculated on national average electricity CO2e intensity per kWh for the preceding 12 months. This changes from year to year, and depends greatly on the amount of rainfall in hydro dam catchments.


170117 emissions per kwh

Total Electricity Emissions – Emissions Intensity

The electricity sector currently emits 4.8 billion kilograms of CO2e per year. That sounds like a lot, and it is, but what does it mean? The average passenger vehicle in New Zealand emits 3,740 kilograms per year. Which means electricity generated from thermal sources in New Zealand is emitting the equivalent emissions of 1.2 million cars.

All types of electricity generation, including renewables, have some environmental impact including greenhouse gas emissions associated with the construction, operation, distribution and transmission of renewable electricity. Below is a graph of the emissions intensity of each type of thermal electricity generation in New Zealand plus electricity sourced from Ecotricity and solar.

Join Ecotricity and help us make New Zealand 100% renewable.

170117 emissions per fuel type


Total Electricity Emissions – Primary Fuel Emissions

The following graph shows the total emissions from the fuel source of thermal generation excluding all other sources of emissions such as construction and land use change. Non thermal forms of renewable generation such as wind, hydro and solar have no direct fuel emissions.161206 electricity emission

161206 electricity emission graph

NZ Emissions Change – 1990 To 2012

We are a small country but our carbon equivalent footprint per capita is still significant. Our greenhouse gas emissions have grown substantially. If we look at our greenhouse gas emissions on a per capita basis, a person in New Zealand accounts for nearly twice the amount of emissions than a person in the UK and more than seven times the amount of a person in India.

150721 NZ EMISSIONS per capita - UPDATED


The following graph shows New Zealands greenhouse gas emissions change from 1990 to 2012 compared to other countries that are part of the Kyoto Protocol. This includes all gases, all industries and all land use changes.

New Zealand emissions have increased 111% since 1990.  Other countries that have exceeded New Zealands emissions growth include China (260%) and Turkey (163%).   Data is sourced from the United Nations - International Panel for Climate Change site.


150721 NZ EMISSIONS appliance growth - UPDATED

Join Ecotricity and help us make New Zealand 100% renewable.


Get Off The Gas

If you’re still using gas you’re BURNING UP THE PLANET ……..
and YOUR WALLET. Find out more here.

get off the gas 2

It’s time to GetOffTheGas and move to New Zealand’s only provider of carboNZero Certified Electricity.

We’re 100% Kiwi and 49% Community Owned …

… and the leading Electric Vehicle Buyers Guide

  170201 T2 T3 Electric Lane Access 170106 Nikola One

161208 Pump vs Plug

161126 Tesloop 161130 electric flight 161212 Farro Fresh161118 SBN Awards 161129 license plates161104 Solar Calculator

  161013 VW ID Tesla NZ

 161012 Formula E160915 Geo Not Renewable 160902 EV Buyers Guide

 160923 Nova Bend Over 160912 Climate House 160916 Ecotricity Ethical Electricity co 160801 Germany Banning Petrol Diesel Cars 160301 Tesla 3 Launch 160701 Europe to ban ICE cars 160401 Hyperloop 160601 Remax 160601 India Smashes Target 160501 Electric buses Driverless shuttles 150202 Morroco Wind 160229 India full electric 2030 160225 Three Ecotricity customers 160210 France Declares War on Rooftops 160130 RCP Project Mgt 150901 Ecotricity fleet electric 160101 New Wifi EV charger 151212 Emissions Free Travel Possible 151111 Antipodes 151101 Flat Hill

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