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Emissions Inventory

One of the tools used in the assessment of air quality is the emissions inventory. An emissions inventory is a geographically referenced list of pollution sources which estimate the type and quantity of pollutants emitted to the air.

The emissions estimates are based on emission factors, e.g., a known amount of NOx is emitted from a given type of vehicle exhaust at a given speed, per kilometre travelled. An emissions inventory is therefore composed of databases of activity data over the relevant time period (e.g. daily vehicle flows along a stretch of road or emissions from commercial properties), and emission factors for these activities (e.g. vehicle emission factors derived from engine testing).

Emissions tables page

New Emissions Inventory for Air Quality and Climate Change

The Sussex Air Quality Partnership (Sussex-air) is committed to updating and building on the existing emissions inventory for Sussex. It is envisaged that an updated version of the inventory will be compiled through 2009.

As well as updating the inventory for air quality pollutants such as NOx, SO2, PM and CO, the partnership are widening the inventory to encompass greenhouse gases relative to Climate Change and Sustainability indices. These will include carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4). T here will be a wider focus on emissions to include; domestic, transport (road, sea & air), industry, agriculture, landfill and natural habitats.

Data will also be available for the assessment and monitoring of national indicators (NI) such as:

  • NI 185 : Percentage CO2 reduction from LA operations
  • NI 186: Per capita CO2 emissions in the LA area
  • NI 194: Air quality – % reduction in NOx and primary PM10 emissions through local authority’s estate and operations

The Sussex Air Quality Partnership (Sussex-air) commissioned AEA Energy & Environment to provide activity and emissions data from the UK National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory (NAEI) for the Sussex region. The data was used as the starting point to develop a full emissions inventory for the Sussex region, which underpins work that was undertaken as part of a EU InterregIIIA supported project called "Air Rives Manche – Ozone" (ARMO) project (2007), and will be continued with support from the EU InterregIV project "Particulates Air Rives Manche" (PARM (2009 – 2012).

Figure 1 - Example of emissions from minor road traffic activity in Sussex(2004)

Example of emissions from minor road traffic activity in Sussex(2004)

The baseline dataset has been integrated from the NAEI (2004) was provided and input into the EMIT emissions inventory tool used by the Sussex-air. The source sectors covered in the dataset include:

  • Combustion in energy, commercial, domestic and industrial sectors
  • Industrial processes
  • Gatwick airport
  • Transport (road, rail and marine shipping)
  • Agriculture and landfill

Some of these sectors are provided as activity data whilst the others are provided as emissions data or a mixture of both, depending on the nature of sector involved. The emissions data are provided for 3 greenhouse gases:

  • carbon dioxide (CO2)
  • methane (CH4)
  • nitrous oxide (N2O)

and the 7 UK Air Quality Strategy pollutants:

  • benzene
  • 1,3 butadiene
  • carbon monoxide (CO)
  • lead (Pb)
  • nitrogen oxides (NOx)
  • particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10 (particulate matter <2.5 µm and <10µm)
  • sulphur dioxide(SO2)

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