Browse by topic: Publication, Air Pollution, Briefing


Dieselgate continues: new cheating techniques

This briefing looks at the main results of Dieselgate investigations in Germany, France and the UK and finds that they indicate the presence of more defeat devices. They also show most manufacturers switch off or turn down their emission control technologies at temperatures and conditions outside of the lab test without rigorous justification. More suspiciously, most cars in Europe emit much more pollution after a hot engine restart compared to a cold one demanded by the EU law – in contrast to in the US.

Published on May 24, 2016 - 15:51

Type approval reform: a once-in-a-decade opportunity to improve Europe’s failing testing system

This briefing explains how the new type approval proposal is a once-in-a-decade opportunity to strengthen the European vehicle and component testing system, and that while the proposal is a good start, it is missing key elements needed to make it truly effective.

Published on May 23, 2016 - 15:12

Briefing: Environmental Goods Agreement

Launched in July 2014, the Environmental Goods Agreement (EGA) is being negotiated between the European Union – on behalf of its 28 member states – and 16 other members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). The selection of goods for the EGA list was undertaken in secrecy and without a definition of an environmental good or selection criteria. T&E has identified around 120 items on the list of 650 goods for which we do not see any environmental justification for lowering tariffs. We argue that negotiations should open up and the assessment of what is an environmental good should be conducted by recognised experts in full transparency, on the basis of a widely accepted methodology.

Published on September 16, 2015 - 10:05

Realistic real-world driving emissions tests: the last chance for diesel cars?

Harmful levels of air pollution are endemic in European cities, especially close to roads, causing 400,000 premature deaths annually and costing the EU a whopping €1 trillion a year. This paper focuses on the role played by diesel cars in the air pollution crisis and identifies obsolete tests and optimisation strategies by car manufacturers as the reasons they have failed to deliver real-world improvements. It explores the Commission’s proposed new real-world driving (RDE) test, which is to be implemented for new Euro 6 standard vehicles, and outlines a timetable to address important issues relating to air pollution from cars.

Published on July 29, 2015 - 18:31

Non-Road Mobile Machinery: The good, the bad and the dirty

This briefing assesses the new regulation proposal for emissions from non-road mobile machinery (NRMM). It makes modest progress in covering a wider range of engines types and in tackling the issue of particulates emissions. However, T&E finds that the proposal is likely to create market distortion and favour specific fuel/technologies that cannot be justified. It also has no requirement on existing engines to adopt retrofit equipment to have an earlier impact on air quality, resulting in an unacceptably long wait in light of the persistent air quality problems around Europe.

Published on March 20, 2015 - 13:03

Realistic real-world driving emissions tests: a last chance for diesel cars?

Air pollution emissions limits for cars, vans and trucks (Euro Standards) have been progressively tightened, on paper, over 25 years but have failed to deliver real-world improvements for several key pollutants, notably nitrogen dioxide. This is because obsolete tests and “cycle beating” techniques have been used by carmakers leading to levels of emissions from some cars many times higher on the road than in laboratory tests. In October 2014, the Commission will be discussing progress and next steps with EU member states. This paper outlines key issues for member states to ensure that the new real-world (PEMS) tests are robust and representative of real-world driving in order for emissions to decline on the road. 

Published on September 30, 2014 - 11:01

Draft proposal on pollutant emissions from NRMM

The aim of the European legislation on pollutant emissions from Non-Road Mobile Machinery (NRMM) is to protect human health and the environment. This can only be achieved by strict emissions limits aligned with Euro VI emissions limits for trucks and buses. The Commission draft proposal for NRMM legislation must be reinforced to achieve its objectives and be coherent with the emissions legislation for road sources.

In this briefing T&E explains how, as it stands, the draft proposal on NRMM emissions is incoherent and worryingly weak, and will fail to adequately address the burden on health caused by the diesel exhaust from these machines.

Published on April 14, 2014 - 15:49

Tackling real world emissions from cars

Light duty vehicles (LDVs) emit more pollutants on the road than in laboratory conditions. In order to solve this problem the Commission decided to introduce complementary type-approval procedures to measure gaseous and particulate emissions during real driving to make sure that they are similar to legal emission limits. To achieve this, the Real-Driving Emissions-Light Duty Vehicles (RDE-LDV) working group was created in 2011. Work in this group is currently focused on RDE tests during initial type approval.

This paper has been prepared by T&E to aid the work of this group. The paper considers the main topics of discussion: data analysis methods, boundary conditions, conformity factor, equipment (portable emissions measurement system – PEMS) and scope.

Published on April 14, 2014 - 15:43