Spending 60% of the EU’s key infrastructure fund on contributing to climate objectives – as proposed by the European Commission today – will ensure smarter and cleaner spending, green NGO Transport & Environment (T&E) has said. The Connecting Europe Facility would have €42.3 billion to co-finance investments including €30 billion for transport, as part of the draft 2021-2027 EU budget just published.
After many false dawns the electric car is finally on a trajectory to replace the internal combustion engine.
You could almost hear the sigh of relief going through the ‘Quartier Européen’ two weeks ago. Despite all the talk of a populist anti-EU insurgency taking Brussels by storm, that was not Sunday evening’s story. The people’s party (EPP) and the social democrats (S&D) each lost 30-40 seats. But the big surprise was the excellent performance of liberal and green parties. By Monday morning people started to talk about ‘a green wave’ with even the European Commission’s most powerful bureaucrat, Martin Selmayr, joining the chorus.
MEPs today voted for €10 billion of the EU’s transport infrastructure budget to be spent on smart, sustainable and safe transport projects like re-charging stations and railway signaling upgrades. Transport & Environment (T&E) said that, with the COP climate conference in Poland ongoing, the vote signals that the EU’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) will help meet climate targets.
Transport and energy ministers today backed plans to spend €7 billion of the EU’s transport infrastructure budget on more sustainable projects like electric vehicle re-charging points and upgrades to rail signalling. Sustainable transport group Transport & Environment (T&E) welcomed the ministers’ earmarking of part of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) for the period 2021-2027.
MEPs of the industry and transport committees voted this morning to reject plans to guarantee 40% of the EU’s transport infrastructure budget (some €12 billion) be spent on more sustainable projects like smart grids and charging stations. European NGO federation, Transport & Environment (T&E) is disappointed with this vote because it locks in considerable funds into fossil fuel powered transport. Thus T&E calls on all MEPs to reject this in December’s plenary vote.
Powering Europe’s transport with fossil gas – widely known as ‘natural’ gas – would emit as much greenhouse gases as using petrol, diesel or conventional marine fuels, a new T&E report has found. Fossil gas cars also emit as much air pollution as petrol ones and their limited advantage over new diesels that comply with the latest emissions standards could be eliminated by the planned introduction of new Euro VII/7 standards, the research shows. Yet, by taxing gas for transport at a rates much lower than petrol and diesel, European lawmakers are incentivising the use of this fossil fuel.
Despite the perception that public recharging is a major barrier to the mass uptake of electric vehicles (EV), public chargers are only used for about 5% of charging events, including on-street city charging, car parks and fast charging along road corridors. The data compiled in various studies to date shows that the vast majority of EV charging happens at home or work and it is a lack of choice and availability of electric cars that is the principal barrier.
Which comes first, electric cars or the recharging points? How to tackle this dilemma has been the subject of considerable debate. This report examines the importance and availability of public charging infrastructure and how to efficiently expand the existing network as the number of electric vehicles on the road increases.
The European Commission has announced a commitment to spending at least 60% of the EU’s cross-border infrastructure fund on schemes that help the fight against climate change. T&E has largely welcomed the announcement, though it criticised the proposal to count EU funding for gas projects towards the climate spending goals.