Ryanair grabbed headlines earlier this month after it was revealed that it's now a top 10 carbon emitter in Europe. But for those of us working on aviation and climate, the news came as no surprise. Aviation emissions have been soaring for years. And as other sectors’ emissions decline, aviation has been climbing up the climate rankings. Aviation is the most carbon intensive mode of transport, Europe’s fastest growing source of emissions, and with its emissions having grown 26% in five years, Europe’s greatest climate failure.
Ten months. That’s all it took for Europe to agree its biggest ever climate package for trucks. By EU standards that is miraculously fast. But it was the culmination of a radical change in approach that has taken place over the last nine years. Until 2016 the European Commission’s mantra was that the trucking market was a rational one, the implication being that increased transparency through a new test procedure and consumer demand would do the trick. Then the Commission’s stance changed abruptly.
On Monday, EU lawmakers may finally reach a deal on truck CO2 emission standards and on the first ever sales targets for zero and low-emission trucks. Electric trucks will benefit hauliers and society as a whole, but an ambitious sales benchmark will be needed to make sure truckmakers actively sell affordable and reliable models.
This blog was first published by EurActiv
By Jori Sihvonen and Andrew Murphy
The ink is barely dry on the EU’s revised renewable energy policy and already it is under threat from the aviation sector. That sector’s UN aviation agency, ICAO, known for its “spectacular lack of transparency”, is once more having a closed door meeting which risks clearing the way for the type of bad biofuels the EU has spent a decade trying to get rid of. And, on top of that, they are seeking to add “lower carbon” aviation fossil fuels as an option to cut aviation emissions.
Should Europeans be forced to burn palm and soy in their cars in the name of EU climate policy? This is the simple question the European Commission needs to answer today.
After five rounds and 27 long hours of negotiations, the EU agreed a new car CO2 deal that will cut new car emissions by 15% in 2025 and 37.5% in 2030. This is good news, especially considering where we started.
“What a day! More tomorrow. Goodnight and goodbye #EU2050”. EU climate commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete was obviously very pleased about the announcement he made last Wednesday. Under his stewardship the Commission proposed a plan that would see the EU almost entirely cut its carbon emissions in the next 30 years. It is a bold plan which broadly sets the right direction for the EU economy and its climate, energy and transport policy for decades to come (although the plan is way too optimistic about bioenergy).
This opinion article was first published by EurActiv
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?
Decarbonising the global economy requires all the world’s major economies to join forces and move in the same direction. That makes fighting climate change the largest cooperative effort humankind has ever embarked on and also explains why the Paris agreement was such an important achievement. But at the same time it is clear international agreements are only one part of the climate puzzle. And that’s actually a good thing.
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