The European Union’s (EU) largest climate change mitigation tool, the Climate Action Regulation (CAR), covers almost 60% of all greenhouse gases. It establishes annual carbon budgets between 2021 and 2030 for each EU country, covering sectors like surface transport, buildings, agriculture, small industry and waste.
MEPs have sent a signal to EU governments that the bloc’s first ever truck CO2 standards need to be more ambitious than those proposed by the European Commission. The European Parliament’s environment committee today voted for a 20% reduction in truck CO2 emissions in 2025, and 35% in 2030. Transport & Environment (T&E) said the increased ambition in emissions reduction targets and a zero-emission truck sales target with teeth are a very positive decision that will cut climate emissions, make air in cities cleaner and slash fuel bills for businesses.
Pressure on the European Commission to speed up the introduction of safer trucks has come from the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. In a letter to the industry commissioner Elzbieta Bieńkowska, Khan says the Commission’s deadline of 2026 for all new models to meet ‘direct vision’ requirements to allow truck drivers to see pedestrians and cyclists better is too late, adding: ‘We need to move quicker.’
German and European truck lobby groups are piling the pressure on lawmakers to weaken emission reduction targets so they can keep selling even dirtier diesel lorries for another decade – while selling as few electric trucks as possible. New trucks sold in 2025 could be even less fuel efficient than those sold in 2019, a new T&E analysis shows, if lawmakers give in to the German VDA and Europe’s ACEA.
The European Commission published a proposal to review the General Safety Regulation (GSR) in May 2018. This regulation defines safety technologies and design features that must become standard in new vehicles if they’re to be sold in the EU. Over 25,000 people die each year as a result of road traffic collisions in the EU. Making all new vehicles safer is a big part of addressing this problem. The more well-defined and ambitious the GSR is, the more lives that will be saved.
T&E analysed the impact of the truck lobby’s (ACEA and VDA) proposal on transport and truck emissions in Germany and Europe, using the in-house model EUTRM. The analysis shows that if policy makers were to follow the advice of European truckmakers, new vehicles in 2025 could be even less fuel efficient than those sold in 2019, and truck emissions will continue to grow in Germany and the rest of Europe.
In this letter to EU Industry Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan welcomes her proposal to define a direct vision standard – the area surrounding a truck cab that the driver must be able to see without using mirrors or cameras – but says “we need to move quicker” on its implementation.
The European trucking sector is at a crossroads and must make a choice between emissions climbing 10% over the next decade or taking a pathway towards lower CO2 emissions, stronger economic growth for Europe and better energy security. A pathway towards zero carbon road freight would cut oil imports by 1bn barrels of oil equivalent by 2030, would strengthen GDP and would create around 120,000 net additional jobs across the economy.
Electric trucks are urgently needed for Europe to achieve its climate goals, according to a new study commissioned by the Dutch Environment Ministry. It shows that one out of three new trucks will need to be electric or zero-emission by 2030 if the EU is to meet its Paris commitments.
Last spring Daimler/Mercedes, the world’s number one truckmaker, was caught with its pants down by the Deutsche Post DHL Group. During a testing day organised by DP-DHL, which was presenting its self-developed electric van, the StreetScooter, one of its vehicles being trialled by potential customers went way outside the test drive area, with its GPS showing it was en route to Stuttgart.