The United States has set new standards for carbon dioxide emissions from lorries, which are sufficiently ambitious to threaten to leave Europe’s truck-making industry behind. The International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) described the new standards as ‘a big win-win’ for their potential to cut both costs and greenhouse gases, while T&E said they were ‘as much about environmental leadership as about innovation’.
National emissions-reduction targets proposed for the transport, agriculture and buildings sectors include loopholes that would put their delivery at serious risk, environmental groups have warned. The regulation proposed by the European Commission will determine how member states share the burden of meeting the EU’s climate goals by 2030.
The race to electrify mobility took an important step forward with a series of announcements from German carmakers on new electric cars and trucks. This coincided with a strong signal from the European Commission, through its Low-Emission Mobility Strategy, that electric vehicles, and not diesel-powered ones, have the principal role in decarbonising transport.
Fears that Europe’s transport is still lagging behind other industrial sectors in tackling climate change have been confirmed by the latest data from the European Environment Agency (EEA). Its data show greenhouse gases from transport have grown for the first time since 2007. T&E says the figures are worse than the EEA says, and calls on the EU to take ‘ambitious’ action.
An agreement between EU governments and the European Parliament on the so-called ‘market pillar’ of the fourth railway package means the plan to open up domestic passenger rail to competition from 2020 will be ratified in autumn 2016 and countries will then have three years to implement it.
The cost of introducing ambitious CO2 reduction targets for cars by 2025 is much less than previously estimated, according to preliminary figures released by research group the ICCT. Cutting car CO2 to around 75g of CO2 per km is estimated to cost around €600 extra per vehicle beyond the agreed 95g/km 2021 target.
By Jos Dings, T&E executive directorAmerica is no green saint. An American emits more than twice the carbon of a European. Per head Americans also use more than twice as much oil for transport as Europeans do – mostly because five Americans own as many vehicles as eight Europeans and many of their vehicles don’t even fit in European garages. They send more than three times as much household waste to landfills. And so on.
The new car market could change dramatically after 2020 with sales of electric vehicles set to rocket, according to research by the energy information and analysis service, Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).
A consistent set of stricter EU rules on CO2 emissions from cars and vans could help reach climate goals while boosting the renewable energy sector, and at relatively little cost, according to a new report from an energy think tank that advises the European Commission. The report says electricity providers can play a central role if they recognise the overall value of pushing for tighter CO2 standards in road transport.