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Shale’s false dawn shouldn’t obscure the clean electricity revolution

It is impossible to have missed the news on cheap oil and gas, and what it is doing to our economies. A Google search for ‘oil price drop’ shows you what Reuters, BBC, Bloomberg, Forbes, etc – the big boys – have to say on the subject. And shale plays a key role in both. And indeed, oil costs less than it did in 2008 and 2012. And indeed, this is having a big economic impact. It means that Europe in 2014 saved around 1% of GDP, more than €100 billion, in import bills. A free and welcome boost. But this column is not seeking to add to what Reuters has to say. It wants to offer two other perspectives.

America’s challenge to European truck supremacy

When people think about American trucks, the image that springs to mind is a massive Coca-Cola truck with a big nose. These massive rigs don’t seem particularly efficient and for a long time Europeans made fun of the big-nosed US mammoths. Some European manufacturers even boasted about how they sold out-dated technology in the US. This is about to change.

Regulation needed to stimulate electric-vehicle market – report

Electric vehicle (EV) sales grew to 67,000 vehicles in 2014, up from just 700 in 2010, which T&E’s analysis found was partly the result of more major car companies offering EV models in the market. However, they still only represent 0.5% of the total annual sales, in part as a result of limited supply of models (just 20 are available). Some manufacturers – most notably Ford and Fiat – are not supplying any models.

‘Test gaming will continue to undermine CO2 cuts after 2020’

While new cars sold in 2014 averaged CO2 emissions of 123g/km, according to the How Cleans are Europe's cars 2015? report, real-world emissions are much higher and reductions in CO2 are happening considerably slower than depicted. Now T&E is warning that the cheating will continue to undermine progress even after a new test, the Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Procedures (WLTP), is introduced.

Opening for EU-US cooperation on effective aviation CO2 standard

The EU is facing calls to work with the US government to ensure global standards being developed to regulate aviation’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are effective – after the US Environment Protection Agency (EPA) finding last month that emissions from aircraft endanger human health.

Transport industry and green groups join forces to inject competition into truck fuel efficiency

The International Road Union, The European Express Association, Leaseurope, CLECAT, Green Freight Europe, The Northern Logistics Association, European Transport Board and Transport & Environment call on the European Commission to give a much-needed boost to competition on truck fuel efficiency, in a letter sent today to Commission officials.

Hauliers and NGOs demand a transparent CO2 test to boost truck fuel efficiency - Letter

Sketch of a book (default image for publications

In this letter, Europe's hauliers association (IRU), European logistics and forwarding associations (CLECAT, European Transport Board, Nordic Logistics Association), EU vehicle leasing and rental organisation (Leaseurope), European Express Association, Green Freight Europe and T&E urge the European Commission to propose a truck and bus CO2 test (known as VECTO) that is transparent, cost-effective and easy to use for third parties, with simulated results than can be verified through a form of testing for real-world compliance. The signatories of the letter also call on the Commission to propose a test that enables small road transport companies (85% of the fleet) to independently consult and compare different vehicle combinations, CO2, fuel consumption and energy use, where possible online. The new test must “remove market barriers by increasing market transparency and vehicle comparability thus stimulating competition among manufacturers and end-user awareness” as the Commission set out to do in its May 2014 truck CO2 strategy.This page also includes a downloadable discussion paper on confidential input date for VECTO.The Commission has developed a test procedure called VECTO to measure CO2 emissions from new trucks and buses. The VECTO test procedure is a simulation tool that aims to provide truck and buses buyers with accurate fuel consumption information. The details of the test procedure are currently being discussed in a DG GROWTH expert committee and the final legislative proposal is expected in mid-2016. 

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