Military contribution to Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004

Information requested

You asked for the most recent percentage contribution that the military makes to Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions and separately to transport emissions categorised by air, land and sea.


As the information you have requested is ‘environmental information’ for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA. This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

The full database which underpins the Scottish Government’s Scottish Greenhouse Gas Statistics publication is published alongside the statistics release each year.

In this database, the only source of emissions which are directly attributable to military activities in Scotland relate to aviation, AWACS and shipping.Other emissions, e.g. stationary combustion on military facilities or ground transport, are indistinguishable from similar activities conducted in other sectors. For your convenience, I have extracted identifiable military emissions for 2019 in the table below.

Table 1. Identifiable military GHG emissions, Scotland, 2019

Emissions source

GHG emissions, KtCO2e

Identifiable military emissions

Aircraft - military


Shipping - naval


Airborne Warning And Control Systems (AWACS)


Total emissions

Total (net) greenhouse gas emissions


Aviation emissions (domestic, international and military)


Shipping emissions (domestic, international, fishing and military)


Contributions to total(s)

Identified military emissions as a percentage of total net GHG emissions.


Military aircraft and AWACS emissions as a percentage of total aviation emissions.


Naval emissions as a percentage of total shipping emissions.


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Central Enquiry Unit
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The Scottish Government
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