MEPs this week voted to approve rail reforms that would harmonise technical specifications and create a single EU-wide authorisation procedure for rail stock. However, the European Parliament diluted the Commission’s proposal to more clearly separate companies that run rail infrastructure from those that provide freight and passenger services, reversing a previous position by its transport committee.
The European Commission is taking legal action against the UK over claims it is exceeding limits on air pollution from traffic. Britain has two months to respond to the case that it breached EU limits for nitrogen dioxide (NO2) emissions, which cause breathing and other health problems.
The first railway handbook on energy consumption and CO2 emissions from the world’s railways has been published by the International Railways Union (UIC) and the International Energy Agency (IEA).
Researchers have identified more evidence that climate-friend means of transport are good for health as well as the environment.
An institute in America has tried to calculate the monetary and time value of traffic congestion – and says it costs the USA $101 billion a year.
The Commission is taking legal action against the British and French governments for failure to allow competition through the Channel Tunnel.
MEPs have supported a resolution that ‘strongly recommends’ 30 km/h speed limits in all residential areas.
A group of environmental NGOs has published a ranking list of 17 European cities, based on what they have done to improve air quality. Berlin came top, closely followed by Copenhagen, Stockholm, Vienna and Zurich.
Freight carried by rail is up, in particular in eastern Europe. The figures, from the European railway companies’ umbrella organisation CER, coincide with a report highlighting ‘significant potential’ for a shift to rail to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
Voters in central Switzerland have rejected a proposal for a second road tunnel through the Gotthard mountain.