Austria is on track to have another setback in meeting its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions reduction target by 2030, with vehicle fuel use going up during the first half of 2019, according to an independent traffic authority.
In a press release Monday, the Austrian Traffic Club (VCO) said about 10 million liters more fuel were used during the first six months of the year compared with the same period in 2018, indicating vehicle traffic will contribute to an increase in CO2 emissions.
While petrol usage declined by 10 million liters to a total of about one billion liters, this was surpassed considerably by a 20-million-liter increase in the use of diesel fuel, which totalled about 4 billion liters.
The VCO said this will have a more noticeable impact on emissions totals, given that diesel fuel causes about 13 percent more CO2 emissions than petrol.
The Austrian government had previously determined to reduce CO2 emissions to a total of 15.7 million tons by 2030.
However, the total emissions have climbed for four consecutive years, up to 23.9 million tons in 2018.
The VCO called for a number of measures to be pursued to bring the emissions totals down, including making all large regional centers in the country more easily accessible via public transport, and expanding bicycle infrastructure to encourage people to make fewer short trips by car.