2.C.7.a - Copper Production

Short description

Within this NFR subcategory, SO2, PM2.5, PM10, TSP, PCDD/F, HCB, As, Cd, Cu, Hg, and Pb emissions from the production of copper are reported.

Category Code Method AD EF
2.C.7.a T2 AS D, CS

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Method(s) applied
D Default
T1 Tier 1 / Simple Methodology *
T2 Tier 2*
T3 Tier 3 / Detailed Methodology *
CS Country Specific
M Model
* as described in the EMEP/EEA Emission Inventory Guidebook - 2019, in category chapters.
(source for) Activity Data
NS National Statistics
RS Regional Statistics
IS International Statistics
PS Plant Specific
As Associations, business organisations
Q specific Questionnaires (or surveys)
M Model / Modelled
C Confidential
(source for) Emission Factors
D Default (EMEP Guidebook)
CS Country Specific
PS Plant Specific
M Model / Modelled
C Confidential

NA NA -/- NA -/- -/- -/- NE NA -/- L/- -/- -/- NA -/- NE NE -/- -/- NA L/-

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L/- key source by Level only
-/T key source by Trend only
L/T key source by both Level and Trend
-/- no key source for this pollutant
IE emission of specific pollutant Included Elsewhere (i.e. in another category)
NE emission of specific pollutant Not Estimated (yet)
NA specific pollutant not emitted from this source or activity = Not Applicable


Activity data

The yearly production figures were taken from the annual statistical report of the German association for non-ferrous metals [Lit. 1] until 2020. Since 2021 the production figures for primary copper have been directly taken from the producer whereas for secondary copper no updating was possible. In 2022 the primary and secondary copper production amounted to 594.63 kt.

Emission factors

The emission factors are either default values according to the EMEP/EEA air pollutant emission inventory guidebook 2023 [Lit. 2] or determined in research projects [Lit. 3] or from companies environmental reports [Lit. 4]. Nickel emissions in secondary copper production are not reported.

Table 1: Tier 1 emission factors applied for entire time series (primary and secondary copper production)

EF Unit Source
HCB 1 mg/t Emission guidebook 2019 [Lit. 2]
PCDD/F 2.9 µg/t Emission guidebook 2019 [Lit. 2]

Table 2: Emission factors applied for primary copper production in 2021

EF Unit Source
TSP 0.09 kg/t Aurubis [Lit. 4]
PM10 0.0765 kg/t Calculated from Aurubis [Lit. 4]
PM2.5 0.063 kg/t Calculated from Aurubis [Lit. 4]
SO2 3.6 kg/t Aurubis [Lit. 4]
As 0.8 g/t Aurubis [Lit. 4]
Cd 15 g/t Emission guidebook 2019 [Lit. 2]
Cu 13.8 g/t Aurubis [Lit. 4]
Hg 0.031 g/t Emission guidebook 2019 [Lit. 2]
Pb 3.1 g/t Aurubis [Lit. 4]

Table 3: Emission factors applied for secondary copper production in 2021

EF Unit Source
TSP 0.100 kg/t PAREST [Lit. 5]
PM10 0.085 kg/t PAREST [Lit. 5]
PM2.5 0.07 kg/t PAREST [Lit. 5]
SO2 3.0 kg/t Emission guidebook 2019 [Lit. 2]
As 2 g/t Emission guidebook 2019 [Lit. 2]
Cd 486.428 mg/t NE-G-K [Lit. 3]
Cu 46,088.62 mg/t NE-G-K [Lit. 3]
Hg 2.644 mg/t NE-G-K [Lit. 3]
Pb 21,977.15 mg/t NE-G-K [Lit. 3]


The uncertainties for the production amounts are 7% and for the emission factors not more than 50% for primary and 200% for secondary copper production.


With activity data and emission factors remaining unrevised, no recalculations were carried out compared to the prvious submission.

Planned improvements

No category specific improvements are planned.


Lit. 1: German association for non-ferrous metals (WirtschaftsVereinigung Metalle): Annual statistical report: https:https://www.wvmetalle.de
Lit. 2: EMEP/EEA, 2023: EMEP/EEA air pollutant emission inventory guidebook 2023, Copenhagen, 2023. https://www.eea.europa.eu
Lit. 3: Ökopol, IER, IZT, IfG: Bereitstellung einer qualitätsgesicherten Datengrundlage für die Emissionsberichterstattung zur Umsetzung von internationalen Luftreinhalte- und Klimaschutzvereinbarungen für ausgewählte Industriebranchen \\Teilvorhaben 2: NE-Metallindustrie, Kalkindustrie, Gießereien.
Lit. 4: Aurubis, Umwelterklärungen 2023, Aurubis AG, https://www.aurubis.com/
Lit. 5: PAREST, UBA Texte | 48/2013, https://www.umweltbundesamt.de/publikationen/beschreibung-minderungsmassnahmen-im-projekt-parest