AUSTRALIA’S greenhouse gas emissions continued to rise last year, driven by an increase in vehicle use and gases leaking from coalmines, federal government data show.
The nation released 546 million tonnes more carbon dioxide than its land mass absorbed last year, not including the data from changes in land use and logging, which is recorded separately.
This is a 0.6 per cent increase on the 2010 emissions figure, still below the nation’s peak in 2008.
It keeps Australia within its international commitments, but only because it negotiated an unusually easygoing path for itself under the Kyoto Protocol. Under that deal, Australia’s emissions can increase to 108 per cent of its 1990 greenhouse gas output; the present data puts the figure at 104 per cent.