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Greenhouse gas emissions arise from many different activities. The EPA has responsibility for the compilation of GHG emission figures for Ireland. The figures below show the breakdown of greenhouse gas emission per sector in Ireland for 2009. The most recent emissions figures compiled show that in Ireland agriculture is the single largest contributor to the overall emissions, at 29.2% of the national total, followed by energy (power generation & oil refining) at 21% and transport at 21%. The remainder is made up by the residential sector at 12%, industry and commercial at 14.8%, and waste at 2%.
Figure 1: Ireland's Greenhouse gas emissions by sector for 2009 (Source: EPA 2011)
In global terms, Ireland is a small country with a relatively small population. However, Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions per person are amongst the highest of any country in the world. The argument that we are too small a country to make a difference holds no ground - climate change is a global problem that requires a global solution involving all countries.
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