European heads of state have agreed that in 2030, 27% of Europe’s energy should come from renewable sources. Not all renewables are sustainable though; for instance, food-based biofuels as well as burning whole trees imported from the US in EU power plants has come in for a lot of criticism.
This paper is a six-point reaction to transport-specific elements of a draft Energy Union Communication from 30 January 2015.
This paper sets out why a cross-vehicle, cross-modal strategy to accelerate the electrification of transport – a shift towards sustainable e-mobility – should be an essential part of Europe’s ambition to achieve an energy union. It would also bring the benefits of reduced oil imports and transport CO2 emissions as well as stimulate innovation and jobs.
Transport & Environment director Jos Dings addressed a hearing in the European Parliament on 4 November, 2014. He laid out T&E's position on European road toll systems for private vehicles, including environmental, financial, technical and privacy concerns. His remarks are available to download.
This briefing summarises a legal analysis highlighting how the proposals are contrary to the requirements of the current ETS Directive. It also covers new research illustrating why including transport in the ETS would be counterproductive; compared with a scenario of ambitious post-2020 vehicle CO2 standards there would be 160,000 fewer jobs, and €22/77 billion higher oil imports in 2030/2050. Climate policy, as well as transport emissions reductions, would stall.
Overloading of lorries is one of the most common infringements found in road freight transport: One in three lorries controlled is overloaded by 10% or even 20% over safe legal weight limits. This poses serious problems to infrastructure, road safety and the environment.
Traffic noise is the second-biggest environmental factor affecting Europeans’ health after air pollution. Almost half of EU citizens are regularly exposed to road traffic noise over the level that the World Health Organisation considers to pose a serious risk to health. Noise pollution has been linked to 50,000 fatal heart attacks every year in Europe. This briefing outlines the European Commission, Parliament and Council positions on a proposal for new vehicle noise standards ahead of a third round of trilogue negotiations on 5 November, 2013. It also outlines T&E's analysis of the main issues as well as its recommendations for a compromise that avoids legal and technical loopholes.
The Commission's proposal on biofuels, published in October 2012, introduced additional incentives for biofuels from wastes and residues. These biofuels can count four times towards the 10% target for renewables in transport. However, the proposed framework is not in conformity with waste legislation, nor adapted to the biofuel context. It also leaves residues and co-products undefined, instead opting just to include an incomplete list of raw materials in an annex without description or clarification. This briefing note, written by Tim Grabiel of Défense Terre, examines the treatment of waste, residues and co-products for biofuels and bioliquids within the Renewable Energy Directive and Fuel Quality Directive and suggests a different classification of these materials.
Proposals to lower CO2 emissions are currently being considered by the Environment Committee of the European Parlaiment. The amount of CO2 cars emit is directly related to the amount of fuel the vehicle consumes – lower carbon vehicles therefore use less fuel and are cheaper to run. This briefing outlines why 95g in the regulation should mean cars on average achieve 95g on the road and why flexibilities are unnecessary and counterproductive.
Cars are responsible for an eighth of Europe’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. The amount of CO2 produced is directly related to the amount of fuel the vehicle consumes – lower carbon vehicles are therefore more fuel efficient and cheaper to run. In 2009, the EU set legally-binding targets for new cars to emit 130 grams of CO2 per kilometre (g/km) by 2015 and 95g/km by 2020. Companies providing technology solutions to car-makers confirm 95g can be met through conventional technology without the need to shift to electric or hydrogen powered vehicles.