More than 2000 demonstrators representing all 51 states of the USA staged a protest outside the White House last month, objecting to the Keystone XL pipeline that would pump oil derived from tar sands from Canada to large parts of America.
The European Commission must give due consideration to the latest scientific results on indirect land use change (ILUC) when assessing biofuels' sustainability and come up with a long overdue legislative proposal that gives each feedstock a specific ILUC factor that reflects their real CO2 emissions. This is the message of a letter from BirdLife International, ClientEarth, the European Environmental Bureau, Transport and Environment, Greenpeace and Wetlands International to the European Commission president.
Shipping has become the first industry to agree a global carbon dioxide reduction strategy. This month’s vote at the International Maritime Organisation approved the establishment of an Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) for new ships. T&E welcomed the decision, but says it cannot be seen as a solution on its own, especially because the EEDI will take many years to be truly effective.
Commission studies that have been leaked to the Reuters news agency show that the indirect land-use change caused by biofuels production is significant and feedstock-specific, and that biodiesel is likely to be worse for the climate than fossil fuels.
Fears that electric and hybrid cars are no better environmentally than oil-fuelled cars have led to a study which shows that electrics and hybrids are better over the whole of their life, but not by as much as was originally thought.
Spain is to abandon its temporary 110 km/h motorway speed limit.
MEPs say the emerging EU-Canada trade deal should not affect how the EU treats tar sands fuels under the EU’s fuel quality directive.
The Commission is being taken to court for the third time over an alleged failure to release information regarding the environmental impact of biofuels. The latest action relates to information about voluntary certification schemes that could play a major part in determining which biofuels are judged to be sustainable. T&E says the lawsuit shows that the Commission is failing to comply with EU ‘access to information’ rules.
A study ordered by the Commission has recommended the EU’s approach to regulating car and van emissions should be changed, as it is not helping to keep the environmental impact of road vehicles to a minimum.
The EU says it will allow governments to give state aid to shipping companies to help them meet stricter sulphur standards.