The transport protocol of the Alpine Convention has entered into force in Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Liechtenstein and Slovenia, having been ratified by the EU over the summer. The Alpine Convention is an international treaty signed by the eight Alpine countries and the EU, aimed at protecting the Alps. Its transport protocol was agreed in 2000, and has a clause that states: ‘The contracting parties shall refrain from constructing any new large-capacity roads for transalpine transport.’ However, Italy held out against ratification until it was persuaded to sign a year ago, and Switzerland has refused to sign the transport protocol, leaving its legal standing in some doubt.
Switzerland is reassessing its view of trans-Alpine transport, a process that could have repercussions for the whole of Europe. A recent consultation process will lead to a proposal, expected next month, to revise the Swiss Road Transit Traffic Act to allow a second trans-Alpine road tunnel, a move that has alarmed environmental campaigners.
New rules allow for smarter design to improve safety and cut emissions Cross-border use of ‘megatrucks’ allowed between consenting countries
Proposed changes to EU law, announced today, will make European lorries safer, cleaner and more fuel efficient. Transport & Environment and the European Federation of Road Traffic Victims (FEVR) welcome the European Commission’s proposal on the weights and dimensions of lorries as a vital turning point for road safety and a small but welcome step towards cutting emissions from road transport.
This paper is a response from Transport & Environment to the ‘Consultation on structural options to strengthen the EU Emissions Trading System’ (ETS) by the European Commission. The response focuses on the fourth (‘d’) of six options proposed – extension of the scope of the ETS to other sectors - with a special focus on extending the scope of the ETS to road transport. T&E strongly opposes this idea, as it will not deliver economic benefits and will seriously jeopardise emissions reductions in transport.
The Commission is taking steps towards a first EU directive aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions from heavy goods vehicles. Its consultation on the weight and dimensions of lorries comes as more evidence emerges about the positive effect of mandatory emissions standards from new cars.
With both safety and environmental challenges in mind, T&E commissioned an independent study from the automotive research institute FKA aimed at identifying the optimal shape and dimensions of a tractor (the part of the lorry that pulls the trailer), integrating new aerodynamic solutions and improving both active and passive safety.
Proposal on how to improve the Energy Tax Directive by Green Budget Europe, the European Environmental Bureau and Transport & Environment
The EU has reached an agreement on revised road charging rules for lorries (the Eurovignette directive) that would open the door for Member States to charge for air and noise pollution in road tolls but introduces a loophole for lorries under twelve tonnes. The deal was finalised last night in 'trialogue' discussions between the European Commission, Council and Parliament.