EURO 5 Emission Limits

September 29, 2006

Position paper on Euro 5 and 6 emissions standards for cars.

In December 2005, the European Commission presented a long-awaited proposal for ‘Euro 5’ emission standards for cars and vans (COM(2005)683 final). Member States and the European Parliament are considering adding a ‘Euro 6’ step to the proposal, in order to achieve long-term certainty and stability.

Environmental NGOs favour 10 modifications to the proposal. We list them below, starting with the most important:

  1. For the ‘Euro 5’ stage, the NOX emission standard(s) for diesel cars should be tightened from 200 mg/km (proposal) to 75 mg/km,. For the ‘Euro 6’ stage the standards should be brought in line with California, the US, and the standard for petrol cars. A 40 mg/km standard under 200,000 km durability could achieve this;
  2. The proposal should be amended to contain provisions on ‘not-to-exceed’ val- ues for NOX and PM (in line with provisions for lorry engines) in order to rectify the current practice of cars being just optimised for the test cycle;
  3. A Euro 6 standard should only be set now if it gets EU standards before 2012 in line with Californian and US standards (which also includes technology- and fuel neutral standards and a NOX standard of maximum 40 mg/km). If the standards are less ambitious it’s better to await a new proposal from the Commission;
  4. In terms of timing, Euro 5 should enter into force in 2008 and Euro 6 in 2011;
  5. A standard for particle numbers should be in place as of Euro 6;
  6. The PM standard should be tightened to 2 mg/km (Euro 5) and 1 mg/km (Euro 6)
  7. The ‘durability’ AND the ‘in use compliance’ ages should be increased to 200,000 rather than the proposed 160,000 and 100,000km respectively, as these

    figures much better represent the lifetime of today’s cars;

  8. The NOX and HC standards for petrol car emissions should be tightened by 50 and 75% respectively instead of 25%.
  9. There should be no exemptions for heavier and/or larger categories of passenger cars, in line with the Commission proposal;
  10. A thorough overhaul of the regulatory strategy for emissions control should be announced, in particular in-use compliance monitoring, now reports of chip- tuning and other cycle-beating practices are becoming ever-more frequent.

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