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A green tax shift to transport can help fix the EU budget

Transport is Europe’s biggest climate problem, representing 27% of the bloc’s greenhouse gas emissions. If Europe is to meet its climate targets and avoid the severe impacts of climate change, additional action is needed to tackle emissions from the transport sector. Meanwhile, the EU is drafting the post-2020 budget with a proposal expected in May 2018. The annual €10-14 billion gap that will be left as a result of the UK’s departure from the EU has triggered debate on alternative sources of revenue for the EU budget. This position paper outlines how a green tax shift has a key role to play in tackling transport emissions and addressing a gap in the EU's budget post-2020.

Published on February 22, 2018 - 11:28

If we’re going to offset airplanes’ carbon emissions, we should at least do it right

No one likes being misled by airlines, not on price, or where their luggage ends up. But fliers face a new risk: being misled on how sustainable their flights are. In a few years, fliers could be told that some of their ticket price is being used to prevent deforestation when in reality those forests had been cut down years ago. That’s because in 2016 countries meeting at the UN’s aviation agency (ICAO) agreed to establish a scheme to offset aviation emissions above 2020 levels, but left it uncertain as to whether they would deliver on this promise. The scheme, known as the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), means airlines won’t have to cut their CO2 emissions but instead pay other actors (the “offsetting” bit) to reduce theirs.

Published on February 16, 2018 - 10:34

Why the shipping industry is on the brink of a detox

Almost every Christmas gift you gave or received two months ago was transported vast distances across the ocean, spending weeks inside a shipping container. What powers these epic journeys across the globe? Unfortunately, it’s not reindeers. It’s the black, sludgy dregs of the refining process known as heavy fuel oil. Each tonne, when burned, releases several thousand times the amount of sulphur and tiny lung-damaging particles that petrol or diesel cars do, while also contributing to dangerous climate change.

Published on February 13, 2018 - 11:40

MEPs slam the brakes on the food-based biofuels bonanza

The European Parliament has once again voted to limit the support to biofuels made from food crops. If finally adopted, the use of biofuels from crops that could otherwise be used for food – including rapeseed, soy and sunflower – would be capped at 2017 national consumption levels and never higher than 7% of all transport fuels. Currently crop biofuels can be supported to a maximum of 7% of European transport’s energy needs.

Published on February 6, 2018 - 13:54

Monkey business

Vorige week kwam aan het licht dat Volkswagen, Mercedes en BMW apen en gezonde mensen giftige dieselgassen lieten inademen om te bewijzen dat moderne dieselauto’s helemaal niet zo vervuilend zijn. De testen leidden terecht tot een schandaal en het ontslag van toplui bij Mercedes en Volkswagen. Maar deze dierproeven zijn geen “accident de parcours”. De werkwijze die de autobouwers hanteren, vertoont als maar meer gelijkenissen met die van de tabaksindustrie. Die financierde jarenlang onderzoek om de schadelijke effecten van sigaretten te weerleggen met de bedoeling de positie van de Wereldgezondheidsorganisatie (WHO) te ondergraven.

Published on February 6, 2018 - 13:22

Il business delle scimmie

Le rivelazioni sulle ricerche di VW, Daimler e BMW, compiute costringendo sia scimmie che persone sane a respirare i fumi tossici del diesel, in un tentativo perverso di dimostrare che le loro automobili fossero pulite suscitano disgusto. Questi metodi presentano delle scioccanti somiglianze con la tattica dell'industria del tabacco, che ha finanziato ricerche volte a negare i danni delle sigarette con l’esplicito obiettivo di confutare le prove dell'Organizzazione mondiale della sanità. Svelano un offuscamento degli standard morali delle case automobilistiche tedesche in netto contrasto con i brillanti marchi che queste aziende curano spendendo enormi somme di denaro.

Published on February 6, 2018 - 13:22

Jusqu’à quand l’industrie automobile restera-t-elle au-dessus des lois?

Pour tenter de prouver que leurs voitures étaient propres, Volkswagen, Daimler et BMW ont payé des recherches au cours desquelles des singes et des humains ont dû respirer des fumées toxiques de diesel. C’est odieux. Ces pratiques font ressortir la morale douteuse des constructeurs allemands, et contrastent avec l’image de marque qu’ils entretiennent soigneusement à grand renfort de marketing.

Published on February 6, 2018 - 13:22

La industria de las mentiras

Las revelaciones sobre el ensayo que VW, Daimler y BMW habían encargado en el que se obligaba a simios y a humanos sanos a respirar los gases tóxicos emitidos por sus vehículos diésel en un degenerado intento de demostrar que sus coches eran limpios es algo abominable. Los métodos muestran impactantes similitudes con las tácticas de la industria tabacalera que financió investigaciones para refutar que los cigarrillos eran perjudiciales con el objetivo explícito de socavar las pruebas de la Organización Mundial de la Salud. Se observa una difuminación de las normas morales entre los fabricantes de coches alemanes que contrasta profundamente con la lustrosa reputación de marca que las empresas gastan una fortuna en mantener.

Published on February 6, 2018 - 13:22

US trucks CO2 standards return hauliers’ investment three times over

US trucks CO2 standards have delivered American hauliers more than three times the return on their investment in just one year. A new analysis by T&E shows that before the application of standards, the price of new trucks was rising but fuel consumption didn’t improve. Since the standards came in, buyers have been paying around $400 (€321) more per new truck but in return they get an average of $1,400 of additional fuel savings every year.

Published on February 5, 2018 - 15:50