A new study commissioned by T&E has suggested that current thinking about the fuel consumption of vehicles has left out an important element – the impact of fuel efficiency standards on the price of oil. The report could change the way governments, politicians and the EU views the pricing of transport.
Editorial by Bill Hemmings, T&E Policy Officer
It's a sad reflection of how little we have now come to expect from EU attempts to tackle the environmental impact of aviation that we are this month celebrating the miniscule victory of having got the Commission to publish a report.
The highly controversial German scheme that offers incentives to scrap an old car and buy a new one is proving so popular that the government has freed up more money to extend the scheme.
The Dutch government is abandoning the aviation ticket tax it introduced last July.
The current fashion among Europe’s politicians seems to be providing financial incentives to scrap old cars and replace them with new ones. It is being dressed up as an environmental measure, despite evidence that it can do more harm than good, and in Germany it has led to two absurd developments.
The principle of charging heavy vehicles for the ‘external costs’ they cause has been approved by MEPs in their response to the Commission’s proposed revision of the Eurovignette directive, but confusion still surrounds details of how member states can charge for the costs of congestion.
EU economics ministers have asked the Commission to coordinate ‘vehicle scrapping schemes’ – taxpayer-funded payments to people who replace an old car with a new one. The schemes are being touted as environment-friendly, but T&E disputes this.
The city of Nottingham has asked the British transport ministry to approve a scheme to tax companies with more than 10 car parking spaces for employees.
The Commission has threatened legal action against Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal for failing to put EU legislation on road charging into their national laws.
Lorries cause vastly more environmental damage and congestion than their share of Europe’s road vehicles leads people to believe, according to a report for T&E that has been published as the EU debates a controversial revision of the Eurovignette directive.