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Fact or Fiction? Car & CO2 Emissions Regulation

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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.

The 95 grams fleet - TODAY

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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.

Documento de posición: Vehículos de baja emisión de carbono: beneficios para los conductores, la economía y el medio ambiente

Los vehículos generan una octava parte de las emisiones de dióxido de carbono (CO2) de Europa. La cantidad de CO2 generada está directamente relacionada con la cantidad de consumo de combustible de los vehículos. Por lo tanto, los vehículos con una emisión de carbono inferior son más eficientes y económicos por lo que respecta al consumo de combustible.

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Vehículos de emisiones ultra bajas y supercréditos

En el año 2009, la Unión Europea estableció una serie de objetivos de obligado cumplimiento para reducir las emisiones de los vehículos nuevos a 130 gramos de CO2 por kilómetro (g/km) para 2015 y a 95 g/km en 2020.

En este documento se expone por qué y cómo se debe fomentar el mercado de vehículos hipocarbónicos sin reducir los considerables beneficios que se derivan del aumento de la eficiencia de los vehículos convencionales.

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The urgency of concerted global action to tackle emissions from international aviation

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New research by the Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) highlights both the urgent need for concerted global action to address international aviation emissions and underlines the fact that all current and foreseen emissions reductions measures being promoted by industry and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) will fall well short of those needed to prevent dangerous global warming.

A critical assessment of the Aachen study on the CO2 reduction potential for light commercial vehicles

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In 2010 the EU reached an agreement on CO2 emission standards for light commercial vehicles (vans). The final outcome was a significant weakening of the initial Commission proposal of 135g CO2/km. Misinformation about technological potential and inflated cost estimates convinced policy makers that the proposed target levels had to be weakened. A study which was instrumental in influencing policy makers was the 2010 Aachen (IKA) study. It had been commissioned by the German ministry of economy to inform its position and concluded that CO2 emission reductions from vans are extremely difficult and very expensive. Despite the availability of new and more up-to-date studies, today the same study continues to be used to assert that 147g is an “over-ambitious” target.This briefing analyses how the IKA study came to its results and assesses the credibility of these results. 

The German proposals on super credits

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In July 2012 the Commission published its proposal to review Regulation 443/2009 which sets CO2 emission targets for new passenger cars. This proposal includes incentives for the sales of ultra-low carbon vehicles through so-called super credits. Germany has suggested significant changes to the Commission proposal. This briefing assesses the impact of the German proposals and compares them to other available solutions.

Appraisal of the Ulmer Report on cars & CO2

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In July 2012 the Commission published its proposal to review Regulation 443/2009 which sets CO2 emission targets for new passenger cars. The Environment Committee leads the deliberations in the European Parliament and Thomas Ulmer (EPP) has been appointed rapporteur. This briefing appraises proposals within his report and quantifies how these could lead to a weakening of the target in excess of 10g, raising the target to more than 105g/km.

Appraisal of the Krahmer Report on vans & CO2

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In July 2012 the Commission published its proposal to review Regulation 510/2011 which sets CO2 emission targets for new light commercial vehicles (vans). The Environment Committee leads the deliberations in the European Parliament and Holger Krahmer (ALDE) has been appointed rapporteur. This briefing appraises proposals within his report and quantifies how these could lead to a weakening of the target in excess of 10g, raising the target to more than 157g/km.

The right utility parameter – mass or footprint (or both)?

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In 2009, the EU set legally-binding targets for new cars to emit 130 grams of CO2 per kilometer (g/km) by 2015 and 95g/km in 2020.  In July, the Commission announced the outcome of its review of the modalities (ways) of achieving the 2020 target. The regulation takes account of the “utility” or purpose of the cars produced by different manufacturers whose targets therefore vary. In 2009, the EU agreed to account for the utility of the vehicles and set targets for individual manufacturers by comparing the average weight (mass) of the cars they produce. This was largely because data was not available on the average size (footprint) of registered cars until 2011. The Commission’s new proposal is to continue to use mass as a measure of utility until 2020 in order to minimize changes to the regulation. 

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