Press Release

Vans CO2 target reached 4 years early because of watered-down target

May 21, 2014

Carbon emissions of the average van sold in Europe fell 3.8% in 2013 to 173g/km, according to official figures published today by the European Environmental Agency (EEA). This means that Europe’s vans achieved their 2017 target of 175g/km four years ahead of schedule – the result of an extremely weak and unambitious target set in 2010 and confirmed by MEPs in 2013.

The progress made by vans in 2013 is less than that achieved by cars, and emissions reductions may even have been exaggerated by under-reporting of vans in 2012. The weak standard plus flaws in the current fuel efficiency and emissions test mean that vans are not delivering the same fuel-savings and emissions reductions as Europe’s cars.
William Todts, senior policy officer at Transport & Environment, said “If van emissions are actually falling in the real-world, then that can only be a good thing for Europe’s drivers, economy and environment. But the vans standard for 2020 is much weaker than the equivalent for cars, and manipulation of emissions testing means vans don’t actually achieve advertised fuel economy on the road. We need an equivalent target for vans in 2025 and an updated emissions test as soon as possible to ensure that Europe’s vans lead the way in fuel-efficiency.” 
Notes to editors:
Vans are one of the fastest growing sources of CO2 emitted from transport in Europe, increasing by 26% between 1995 and 2010. Vans now account for 8% of EU’s road transport emissions. Vans produce CO2 emissions when they burn fuel. Fuel economy is a paramount consideration for businesses operating vans, as fuel bills represent one third of the total cost of ownership of a van.

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