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New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services

New Hampshire Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory

New Hampshire's greenhouse gas emissions include the following six major greenhouse gases:

  • Carbon dioxide (CO2)
  • Methane (CH4)
  • Nitrous oxide (N2O)
  • Industrial Process Gases:
    • Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
    • Perfluorocarbons (PFCs)
    • Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)

These gases are generated from a variety of activities that are commonly categorized into sectors. The sectors include, in order of their percent contribution to the state's total emissions in 2015:

  1. Transportation (42%)
  2. Electric Generation (20%)
  3. Residential (16%)
  4. Commercial (9%)
  5. Industry (4%)
  6. Industrial Processes (4%)
  7. Waste and Wastewater (3%)
  8. Agriculture (1%)

CO2 emissions make up the vast majority of NH's greenhouse gas emissions (92%), most of which is generated by burning fossil fuels (e.g., oil, coal gas) to produce heat and electricity, and to power motor vehicles. CO2 is emitted by all sectors of the state's economy. The remaining greenhouse gases are generated by the Transportation, Industrial, Agriculture, Forestry and Waste sectors. The synthetic gases (HFCs, PFCs and SF6) are generated during industrial processes. Methane (CH4) is generated by the decomposition of organic wastes in landfills, during the wastewater treatment process, and from livestock. Nitrous oxide (N2O) is generated from the production and use of fertilizers and from transportation sources.

NH Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Gas 2015

NH Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Sector 2015

As shown in the figure below, between 1990 and 1995, New Hampshire's annual emissions remained relatively constant. By 2004, the state's GHG emissions had increased by 48 percent over 1990 emission levels. Nearly 40% of this increase had occurred at the very end of the period due to growth in the Electric Generation sector (red line). By 2015, as a result of significant reductions in GHG emissions within the Electric Sector, New Hampshire's total annual GHG were nearly equal to its baseline emissions in 1990. Over that time however, the Transportation Sector (dark blue line) has remained relatively stable, and is easily the largest contributor to the state's annual GHG emissions profile.

NH Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Sector 1990-2015

Due to the amount of area in New Hampshire that is still dominated by forests, the NH landscape is actually a net carbon dioxide user (or sink). The process by which carbon is absorbed from the atmosphere and stored by plants is referred to as carbon sequestration. Carbon sequestration may absorb an amount equivalent to nearly 25% of CO2 emissions generated in NH. The charts above do not account for this carbon sequestration.

NH Department of Environmental Services | 29 Hazen Drive | PO Box 95 | Concord, NH 03302-0095
(603) 271-3503 | TDD Access: Relay NH 1-800-735-2964 | Hours: M-F, 8am-4pm

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