Three years after the Dieselgate scandal was exposed, there are still 43 million highly polluting diesel cars on European roads. As EU industry commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska said at the first European Diesel Summit in Brussels last week, ‘the story isn’t over’. The timing couldn’t have been better to gather policy makers, cities, health experts, consumer groups and green NGOs from across Europe to discuss concrete solutions given that a special ministerial meeting has been convened by the European Commission for 27 November.
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.
Fully electric buses only account for 9% of urban bus sales in Europe – despite being cost competitive with diesel buses when the costs of air pollution and noise are taken into account. That’s according to a new analysis of urban buses by T&E focusing on orders received by bus-makers and the total cost of ownership of different bus types.
Urban buses are the first transport mode where electrification is having a significant impact today. This trend is driven primarily by the rising awareness of toxic air pollution in our cities from internal combustion engines and supported by the compelling economic, comfort, and noise advantages. We expect urban buses to be the first transport mode to reach zero emission thanks to electrification.
EPHA, EUROCITIES and T&E, representing millions of European citizens through city administrations, environmental groups and the public health community, urge the European Commission and national governments to make tackling air pollution from dirty diesel vehicles a political priority for Europe.
The present briefing provides an overview on the evolution of low-emissions zones for cars and vans in EU cities and analyses their effect on consumer behaviour on the basis of a representative survey commissioned by Transport & Environment. It finds that there is a steadily growing number of cities that introduce or tighten low-emission zones. There are currently more than 260 low-emission zones in 12 EU Member States, among which 250 concern passenger cars. The Dieselgate scandal has provided strong impetus to this movement amongst European cities, and there are now also several cities in Central and Eastern Europe that discuss adopting low-emission zones.
Two-thirds of Europeans support the introduction of low-emissions zones (LEZ) banning polluting cars from city centres, a survey undertaken by Ipsos for environmental group Transport & Environment shows.
Europe is set to rapidly increase its fleet of zero-emissions buses after the European Parliament today supported targets for the public procurement of vehicles by local authorities and public companies. MEPs voted for national targets of between 43% and 75% of new buses to be ‘clean’ vehicles in 2030, and for 25% to 50% of cars and vans.
The European Parliament today backed a 50% discount on road charges for zero-emission trucks, incentivising cleaner trucking as part of an overhaul of road tolls in Europe. Green NGO Transport & Environment welcomed the reforms of the Eurovignette Directive which would see electric and hydrogen-powered trucks pay half what the best-in-class diesel trucks would pay in distance-based road charges. The vote comes weeks after Germany exempted fossil gas-powered trucks from its Maut toll despite gas trucks emitting as much greenhouse gas and similar air pollutants emissions as diesel ones.
The EU has agreed to cut its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by at least 80-95% by 2050. Climate policy will require a shift away from petroleum which currently provides nearly all of transport’s energy needs. Apart from a transition towards zero-emission technologies such as battery electric or hydrogen, regulators and governments across Europe are considering what role gas could play in decarbonising transport. This report compiles the latest evidence on the environmental impacts of using gas as a transport fuel.