Truckmakers will have to cut the carbon emissions of trucks they sell in Europe by almost a third by 2030, following a deal reached in the early hours of this morning by EU lawmakers. Transport & Environment (T&E) said the bloc’s first ever emissions reduction targets for heavy-duty vehicles and a sales benchmark for zero and low-emission trucks – also agreed by lawmakers – would spark climate action and fuel savings. However, the legislation will need to be made more ambitious when it’s reviewed in 2022 to continue to drive down emissions in line with the Paris climate goals.
The introduction date for more aerodynamic, safer truck cabs on Europe’s roads will be brought forward to 1 September 2020, EU lawmakers agreed yesterday. The European federation of transport NGOs, Transport & Environment (T&E), welcomed the reform which will speed the roll-out of more rounded truck fronts that allow drivers to better see pedestrians and cyclists and improve fuel efficiency.
The EU should set an ambitious sales benchmark for zero-emission trucks that truckmakers must meet in 2025, six major global brands and transport companies have told lawmakers negotiating Europe's first truck CO2 law. In a letter seen by Transport & Environment, Nestlé, along with retailers Carrefour and Spar Austria, and transport companies Alstom, Geodis and DB Schenker, said a yearly sales benchmark is vital if the transport sector is to reduce its emissions and fuel costs.
In this letter, seen by T&E, six major global brands and transport companies tell EU lawmakers to set an ambitious sales benchmark for zero-emission trucks in the EU's heavy-duty vehicle CO2 regulation.
Truck CO2 emissions should be reduced by 15% in 2025 and 30% in 2030, compared to 2019 levels, EU environment ministers have said. They agreed their joint position on the EU’s first ever truck CO2 reduction targets this week and will enter negotiations with the European Parliament and Commission in early 2019.
Put yourself in the place of a truck driver in a busy city centre. Would you rather (a) see cyclists and pedestrians directly through the windows of your vehicle or (b) have a sensor that lights up on the dashboard when there’s a cyclist or pedestrian very near you – but is invisible due to poor truck cab design?
MEPs have told EU governments that the bloc’s first ever truck CO2 standards need to be more ambitious than those proposed by the European Commission. The full European Parliament voted for a 20% reduction in truck CO2 emissions in 2025, and at least 35% in 2030. Transport & Environment (T&E) said the increased ambition in emissions reduction targets, together with a zero-emission truck sales target that can be enforced, are very positive steps which, once matched by Council, will cut climate emissions, make air in cities cleaner and slash fuel bills for businesses. However, the mandated reductions will not do enough in the truck sector to meet the goals of the Paris agreement.
More weight has been added to the campaign to make large trucks safer for other road users, with a call by Germany’s transport minister that the proposed deadline for introducing safer technology be brought forward.
MEPs have sent a strong signal to EU governments that they want financial incentives to encourage the uptake of zero-emission trucks. In a vote in the full European Parliament last month, members from across all parties supported the European Commission’s proposal to give zero-emission heavy goods vehicles a 50% discount on road charges as part of an overhaul of road tolls in Europe.
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.