The lives of millions of Europeans could be blighted by
traffic noise pollution for years to come if the European Parliament –
under pressure from car manufacturers - backs draft changes to
proposed future vehicle noise emissions standards in a forthcoming
vote. Transport & Environment, the sustainable transport campaigners,
are calling for rules that will lead to a real-world drop in traffic
noise, which is a major cause of heart disease and has a negative
impact on children’s learning.
Lorry road trains as long as medium-sized aircraft could be permitted to travel throughout Europe, following an unprecedented reinterpretation of existing law by European Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas. Sustainable transport campaigners Transport & Environment say the change is undemocratic and undermines the Commissioner’s own key objectives for the transport sector of reducing emissions and boosting rail freight.
According to Reuters (1), the EU is set to confirm a legally-binding target for average new car CO2 emissions of 95 g/km by 2020. Transport & Environment, the sustainable transport campaigners, have warned that the target will not be enough to ensure Europe holds on to its leadership position in fuel saving technologies.
A report in today’s edition of Die Welt (1), suggests future European fuel efficiency standards for new cars could be weakened to account for “infrastructure, driver behavior and other measures”. The story cites a forthcoming report by the EU’s CARS 21 high level policy group.
The European Parliament has overwhelmingly backed today the Resource Efficiency Roadmap, where - among other provisions - MEPs have reiterated the need for legislation which gives tar sands a higher GHG emission value compared with fuels from conventional oil and for correct carbon accounting under the Fuel Quality Directive.
The EU has boosted efforts to remove one of the main sources of air pollution and acid rain from shipping. Environmental groups have welcomed the deal announced today by representatives of the European Parliament, Commission and member states to reduce the sulphur content of marine fuels. The deal now needs to be approved formally by environment ministers and by the full Parliament.
Traffic noise is a serious concern for Europeans, and the EU must act quickly to tackle the issue. That is the call from citizens from several European countries in a video clip published today (1) for International Noise Awareness Day.
Brussels - Fuel tax havens such as Luxembourg and Spain may have to raise their low diesel taxes following a vote in the European Parliament in Strasbourg this afternoon on a proposal to revise the EU’s Energy Tax law. Commenting on the outcome of the vote, Magnus Nilsson, senior campaigner at T&E said: “This vote is good news for countries like Portugal, Belgium, France and Germany who currently lose billions in tax revenue as a result of lorries filling up in fuel tax havens such as Luxembourg and Spain. Lower diesel taxes are bad for the climate and force governments to find cash elsewhere, such as by raising job-killing labour taxes. ”
The oil industry’s claim that a new EU law designed to cut emissions from petrol and diesel production would impose a ‘disproportionate administrative burden’ has been debunked by a new report (1). A study carried out by three consultancies (CE Delft, Carbon Matters and Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands) found that the administrative and reporting costs of new implementing rules for the EU’s Fuel Quality Directive would costs drivers less than half a cent on an average fill-up, or around 1 cent on a barrel of crude oil. Transport & Environment is calling for EU Member States to press ahead with approving the new rules without further delay.
United, American Airlines, and their trade association, Airlines for America, gave up on a lost cause, a late and ill-conceived legal challenge to the European Union’s landmark law limiting global warming pollution from aviation.