Environmental groups have today welcomed a European Parliament vote which will help cut back air pollution by significantly decreasing the amount of dirty sulphur allowed in marine fuels. The Directive on Sulphur in Marine Fuels which was tentatively agreed upon before the summer break by the European Parliament negotiators, the Commission and the Council, has just been formally adopted by an overwhelming majority of MEPs.
The Environment Committee of the European Parliament will vote next week on noise limits for vehicles. The compromise proposal put forward by the lead MEP has been drafted by sports car manufacturer Porsche.
- Transport & Environment (T&E) has welcomed a European Commission proposal to confirm a 2020 fuel efficiency standard for new cars but says the target needs to be stronger with a further limit for 2025.
- 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.