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Visualising the daily carbon emissions of six UK cities


Apr 17, 2020

It’s easy to forget about carbon emissions and the carbon footprint we as individuals create, as it is not visible and the figures provided are often hard to understand. We are often bombarded with news headlines, explaining the environmental damage and negative effect we are having on the planet. Figures like David Attenborough are constantly providing information, through wildlife documentaries to help educate us on the situation the planet is currently facing.

To help us to visualise carbon emissions across different cities in the UK, Utility Bidder have created a visual article. The article compares the carbon emissions against popular city landmarks within six leading UK cities. The data was calculated from recordings by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for 2017.


Looking at London, the capital of the UK, it’s understandable that it produces the highest rate of carbon emissions compared to the other cities listed. It was recorded that on an average day the CO2 produced in London was 81,394 tonnes, filling a 354 metre cube. The UKs tallest building, The Shard is 310 metres tall, which means the cube filled with CO2 is 44 metres taller.


The carbon emissions for Glasgow were compared against the Glasgow Tower which is 127 metres tall. The average daily CO2 produced by Glasgow is 7,175 tonnes, this is a fraction of the capitals emissions but it is still enough to fill 157 metre cube. Therefore the emission cube would be 30 metres taller than the Glasgow Tower.


Brighton ranked the lowest city for its carbon emissions producing only 2,466 tonnes, supporting its history of being a green city. It is also the only city whose landmark is taller than the emission cube, the i360 observation tower was taller by 52 metres. Brighton significantly stands out for its eco-friendly emissions against other cities such as London.

Seeing the data visually allows us to imagine and understand carbon emissions easier, some cities are producing worrying amounts. It explains why newspapers and channels are constantly informing us of the concerning levels and it also reminds us that we need to start making changes in order to reduce the emissions.

By admin