European Parliament to Consider Even Tougher Limits on Vehicle CO2 Than Currently Proposed; Restrictions on Top Speed
|The two proposals for European limits on CO2 from new vehicles, plotted with actual CO2 data from the UK. Click to enlarge. UK data: SMMT.|
The European Parliament will consider implementing tougher targets than the currently proposed 130 g/km binding target to curb CO2 from vehicles.
Under a plan proposed by MEP Chris Davies (UK), vehicles would need to reduce vehicular greenhouse gas emissions to 120 gCO2/km by 2015, and 95 gCO2/km by 2020, solely from improvements in vehicle technology.
The EU had originally set a target of 120 g/km by 2012, with a voluntary milestone of 140 g/km by 2008. However, missing the milestone is a certainty—latest figures suggest that new cars placed on the European market are emitting an average of 162g CO2/km. In response, the EU began developing legally binding reduction targets, currently proposed to be 130 g/km from the vehicle, and another 10 g/km from lower carbon fuels and elsewhere. (Earlier post.)
The European automakers have responded that they would need at least three additional years prior to the implementation of a legislative framework mandating reductions in CO2 from cars, and that the 130 g/km target still puts too much onus on vehicle technology. (Earlier post.)
The Davies proposal thus gives the industry more time, but makes the target more stringent.
The plan calls for the creation of a new market mechanism, the Carbon Allowance Reduction System (CARS). Manufacturers and importers will be required to pay a penalty in proportion to the emissions that their vehicles produce above an annual benchmark, but will be able to claim financial credits for vehicles emitting less than the average.
Davies also proposes that new vehicles should not be awarded type approval if they are built to exceed the maximum speed limit of 130 kph (81 mph) applying in most European countries by more than 25% (162 kph or 101 mph).
Cars designed to go at stupid speeds have to be built to withstand the effects of a crash at those speeds. They are heavier than necessary, less fuel efficient and produce too many emissions. At a time when Europe is worried about its energy security it is sheer lunacy to approve the sale of gas guzzling cars designed to travel at dangerous speeds that the law does not permit.—Chris Davies
He is also calling for a major shift in the advertising of new cars, with 20% of all space devoted to information about fuel economy and CO2 emissions.
Some 19% of all Europe’s carbon emissions come from passenger cars and light-commercial vehicles. Absolute volumes of CO2 continue to rise because of the growing number of cars on the roads, their greater size and much increased power.
The pre-legislative report is due to be voted at committee stage in September and Parliament's full plenary in late October.