National Well-being – The Natural Environment

National Well-being – The Natural Environment: ONS

Natural Resources

  • In 2010, the area covered by the UK woodlands increased by two-and-a-half times the area covered in 1924,
  • The total extent of protected areas in the UK has more than doubled during the last decade, from 3.5 million hectares in 2000 to just over 7.5 million hectares in 2011,
  • The upper range of the UK’s total oil reserves halved from 5 billion tonnes in 1990 to 2.5 billion tonnes in 2010,
  • The population of the wild birds in the UK has remained relatively stable between 1970 and 2010.

Uses of Resources

  • Imports accounted for 80 per cent of the total timber supply in the UK,
  • In 2010, 3.2 per cent of the total energy consumption was from renewable sources, although the amount has increased over 5 times since 1990,
  • The UK is third from the bottom out of all EU 27 countries in terms of renewable energy consumption as a percentage of gross final energy consumption.

Pressure on the Natural Environment

  • Between 1990 and 2010 the emissions from PM10 fell by 54 per cent from 0.31 million tonnes to 0.14 million tonnes,
  • In the UK, during the last two decades, greenhouse gas emissions per head have fallen by 3.9 tonnes of CO2 equivalent,
  • Based on the emissions estimated up to and including 2010, UK is on course to meet its Kyoto Protocol target for greenhouse gas emissions.
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