The use of palm oil for EU biofuels dwarfs the amount used to make cookies, hazelnut spreads, ice cream, shampoo, lipsticks – and other food and cosmetic products. That’s according to new industry data which shows diesel cars and trucks burned 51% of all the palm oil used in Europe in 2017.
The European Parliament will vote next week on whether to strengthen the proposal for Europe’s key climate law, the so-called Effort Sharing Regulation (ESR) – or ‘Climate Action Regulation’, the name agreed by the environment committee. MEPs will be asked to back a more ambitious starting point than the European Commission’s proposal and to close some loopholes to ensure member states actually reduce their emissions.
Pressure on the European Commission to speed up the introduction of safer trucks has come from the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. In a letter to the industry commissioner Elzbieta Bieńkowska, Khan says the Commission’s deadline of 2026 for all new models to meet ‘direct vision’ requirements to allow truck drivers to see pedestrians and cyclists better is too late, adding: ‘We need to move quicker.’
German and European truck lobby groups are piling the pressure on lawmakers to weaken emission reduction targets so they can keep selling even dirtier diesel lorries for another decade – while selling as few electric trucks as possible. New trucks sold in 2025 could be even less fuel efficient than those sold in 2019, a new T&E analysis shows, if lawmakers give in to the German VDA and Europe’s ACEA.
Electric trucks are urgently needed for Europe to achieve its climate goals, according to a new study commissioned by the Dutch Environment Ministry. It shows that one out of three new trucks will need to be electric or zero-emission by 2030 if the EU is to meet its Paris commitments.
A company that runs cruises through Arctic waters is coming under increased pressure to stop using a cheap-but-dirty fuel that is destroying the environment its passengers pay to see. Carnival Corporation’s customers and the general public are being asked to sign a petition at cleanupcarnival.com, setup by an international coalition of environmental groups.
Some 97% of Spain’s population is being exposed to harmful levels of air pollution, a report by T&E’s Spanish member Ecologistas en Acción shows. The economic recovery has brought an increase in the use of diesel for cars, airplane jet fuel, and coal to generate electricity. The main source of pollution in urban areas, where most of the population lives, is road traffic.
The EU’s first-ever fuel economy standards for new trucks will target a 15% CO2 emissions reductions by 2025, the European Commission has proposed. T&E welcomed the draft law, which will save truck owners €5,000 in reduced fuel bills every year, but added that it falls short of the ambition demanded by hauliers and businesses and what’s needed to hit the EU’s own climate goals.
There are growing calls for a green tax shift to the transport sector, which would help fill a gap in the EU’s budget after the UK leaves. A T&E analysis has found new measures such as a carbon tax on motor fuels, aviation kerosene duty, and ending the VAT exemption for flights within and from Europe would raise more than €50 billion annually. And last week, as EU leaders discussed the looming gap, 17 eminent economists rowed in behind the idea, calling it a ‘once in a decade opportunity’ to create a fossil-fuel contribution to the EU budget.