After many false dawns the electric car is finally on a trajectory to replace the internal combustion engine.
The Belgian city of Ghent has reported a 12% reduction in rush-hour traffic, and a 25% increase in cyclists in the first year of its new traffic plan. The findings were reported on the second anniversary of the Ghent Circulation Plan coming into force, and coincided with T&E’s member organisations spending a day in the city before their annual general meeting in Brussels.
At least a quarter of new buses bought by local authorities and public companies will need to be clean vehicles by 2025, EU lawmakers decided last week. More than 75% of buses in Europe are publicly procured, and these purchases and leases will be subject to nationwide binding targets based on the fuels the vehicles run on, in the cases of buses and trucks, and their emissions in the cases of cars and vans.
The European Parliament’s Internal Market Committee today backed safer ‘direct vision’ trucks and buses , amongst a dozen new life-saving measures for cars, vans, buses and trucks. The new direct vision standard will drastically reduce deadly blindspots, enabling truck and bus drivers to see more of the road around the vehicle, thus preventing accidents with cyclists and pedestrians. The European federation of green NGOs, Transport & Environment, welcomes the vote but stresses the urgency of wrapping up this law before European Parliamentary elections in May. Failing to reach a deal before this Parliament mandate would mean another 18 months wasted to save lives.
Europe is set to start cleaning up its public buses in the coming decade after EU lawmakers today agreed binding targets for the procurement of zero-emission vehicles by local authorities and public companies. More than 75% of buses are publicly procured, and negotiators agreed that at least a quarter of these will have to be clean buses in 2025, and at least a third in 2030, under the revised Clean Vehicles Directive.
The announcement of a further 263 new zero-emission buses orders, which will nearly double the number on the UK’s roads from the 329 currently in use, has been welcomed by sustainable transport group Transport & Environment. 19 bus operators will shift to using electric buses with the largest roll-outs set for London (63), Cardiff (36), and Manchester (32).
MEPs have given a thumbs-up to spending €10 billion of the EU’s transport infrastructure budget on smart, sustainable and safe transport projects like re-charging stations and railway signaling upgrades. T&E said that guaranteeing this funding for the period 2021-2027 – as part of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) – is crucial if Europe is to meet its climate targets.
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.
The European Parliament has given a boost to the take-up of electric buses, with a vote that strengthens the bus chapter of the European Commission’s Clean Vehicles Directive. But with elections to the parliament due in May, it is now a race to get the directive approved before the legislative process would have to start again. T&E has since published a report showing that total cost of ownership of e-buses is now almost at parity with diesel buses when health external costs are included.