[Due to the increasing size of the archives, each topic page now contains only the prior 365 days of content. Access to older stories is now solely through the Monthly Archive pages or the site search function.]
Euro Parliament Environment Committee approves 147 g CO2/km target for light commercial vehicles by 2020; caps van speed
May 07, 2013
Members of the European Parliament’s Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee approved a draft law setting out rules for achieving a 147 g CO2/km (235 g/mile) target for new light commercial vehicles by 2020, down from 203 g/km (325 g/mile) today—i.e., a 27.6% reduction. The vote was 53 to 4 with 1 abstention.
The committee also proposed indicative targets for post-2020 CO2 emissions in a range of 105 to 120 g/km (168 to 192 g/mile) from 2025. The committee also voted to limit electronically the top speed of vans to 120 km/h (75 mph).
Reports highlight ongoing advances in vehicle technology, consumer demand for fuel efficiency in US and Europe
May 02, 2013
|4-cylinder engines and hybrid vehicles as a percent of cars sold in the US. Source: CFA. Click to enlarge.|
Two separate reports highlight the ongoing improvement in vehicle technologies and the growing trend toward consumers purchasing more fuel efficient vehicles in the US and in Europe. In the US, the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) released an analysis—“On the Road to 54.5 MPG: A Progress Report on Achievability”—of the response of consumers and automakers as both begin to experience the effects of the newly adopted federal fuel economy standard.
In Europe, a new report from the European Environment Agency (EEA) found that the average car sold in the EU in 2012 was 9% more fuel-efficient than the average three years before, due to improved technology and an increase in the share of diesel cars.
Euro Parliament committee approves new 95 g/km CO2 target for cars; super credits and a switch to WLTP
April 25, 2013
The environment committee of the European Parliament approved a draft law setting out a new CO2 target for cars of 95g CO2/km (153 g/mile) by 2020, down from 130 gCO2/km (209 g/mile) in 2015. The draft also sets indicative targets for post-2020 CO2 emissions in the range of 68-78 g/km (109-126 g/mile) from 2025.
These emission limits are the average maximum allowed for car makers registered in the EU. Makers producing fewer than 1,000 cars a year should be exempt from the legislation, said the MEPs. Car makers would therefore have to produce, in addition to older, heavier or polluting models, enough cleaner ones to achieve a balance of 95g en 2020, on pain of penalties.
Study finds technology cost of achieving European 2020 LDV CO2 targets more than offset by resultant fuel savings
March 19, 2013
|Provisional 2030 economic impact of achieving the 2020 targets in the two Phase I scenarios—Current Policy Initiatives and Tech 1— compared to baseline. Source: Cambridge Econometrics.Click to enlarge.|
A report published by Cambridge Econometrics and Ricardo-AEA concludes that overall, the cost of technologies required to meet proposed European 2020 CO2 regulations for vehicles (95 g/km for cars and 147 g/km for vans) will be more than offset by the resultant fuel savings. The technical and macro-economic study, commissioned by the European Climate Foundation, focuses on light-duty vehicles.
The project is taking a phased approach. This first report (Phase I) examines only the impact of improving the efficiency of fossil-fueled vehicles, in which efficiency gains are delivered by the improvement of the internal combustion engine vehicle, including lightweighting, engine downsizing and hybridization. The Phase II report, to be presented mid-2013, examines the impact of the gradual penetration of advanced powertrains, such as battery-electric vehicles and fuel cell electric vehicles, and the gradual replacement of fossil fuels with increasing levels of indigenous energy resources, such as electricity and hydrogen.
Mayor of London proposes $1.4B cycling plan for the city; “Crossrail for the bike”
March 07, 2013
Among other features, the plans would create a “Crossrail for the bike”—a route that will run for more than 15 miles (24 km), very substantially segregated, from the western suburbs, through the heart of London, to Canary Wharf and Barking. It would use new Dutch-style segregated cycle tracks along, among other places, the Victoria Embankment and the Westway flyover. It is believed to be the longest substantially-segregated cycle route of any city in Europe.
Toyota, City of Grenoble, Grenoble-Alpes Métropole, Cité lib, EDF launch ultra-compact urban EV car-sharing project; i-ROAD and COMS
March 04, 2013
|Concept of the Grenoble urban EV car-sharing project. Click to enlarge.|
Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC), the city of Grenoble, the Grenoble-Alpes Métropole, car-sharing service operator Cité lib, and French energy provider Électricité de France (EDF) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to begin by the end of 2014 a collaborative zero-emission ultra-compact urban electric vehicle car-sharing project in Grenoble aimed at addressing “last mile” transportation needs for those using public transportation.
TMC plans to supply nearly 70 ultra-compact electric vehicles for the 3-year project, including the COMS ultra-compact vehicle produced by Toyota Auto Body (earlier post), as well as a new vehicle based on the Toyota i-ROAD concept vehicle. (Earlier post.)
EEA report suggests road charges for heavy-duty goods vehicles should reflect varied health effects of pollution in different countries
|Air pollution externalities of 12–14 ton HGV on highway (Euronorm III) in euro cents. Source: EEA. Click to enlarge.|
A new report from the European Environment Agency (EEA) suggests that new road charges for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs or lorries) should reflect the varied health effects of traffic pollution in different European countries. This means charges should be much higher in some countries compared to others, according to the (EEA).
The amended Eurovignette Directive (2011/76/EU) relating to the charging of HGVs for use of major European motorways prescribes that from 2013, Member States may include air pollution costs in any charging structure for roads under the Trans‐European Network (TEN-T) and for comparable domestic motorways. The revenue from such schemes should be invested in sustainable transport, the Directive states. However, adoption of road user charges depends on a decision by individual countries.
SEAT introducing natural gas Mii Ecofuel with 79 g/km CO2
March 03, 2013
|The SEAT Mii Ecofuel. Click to enlarge.|
SEAT, a member of the Volkswagen Group, is expanding its Mii family with the introduction of the Mii Ecofuel, which runs on natural gas. The first model with a CNG engine to wear a SEAT badge, and making its debut at the Geneva Motor Show 2013 this coming week, the Mii Ecofuel offers average consumption of 2.9 kg CNG/100 km and CO2 emissions of 79 g/km. Given the fuel price in many countries, the running costs are approximately half those of a Mii with a gasoline engine.
The 1.0-liter, 68 PS (50 kW) engine is based on the three-cylinder gasoline unit found in the Mii with 60 PS (44 kW) and 75 PS (55 kW) outputs, but it’s been specifically developed for CNG operation. At an entry price of €12,050 (US$15,700) in Germany, the new SEAT Mii Ecofuel is also the most inexpensive CNG model on the market.
European automakers welcome Obama’s announcement of comprehensive US-Euro trade talks; major focus on regulatory convergence
February 14, 2013
In his State of the Union (SOTU) address Tuesday night, President Barack Obama announced the launch of talks on a comprehensive Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership with the European Union. The European Association of Automobile Manufacturers (ACEA) welcomes the talks, one of the elements of which will be addressing regulatory issues and non-tariff barriers such as different safety or environmental standards for cars.
The goal of the talks, said the EU in a statement, will be to move towards a more integrated transatlantic marketplace, noting that: “Currently, producers who want to sell their products on both sides of the Atlantic often need to pay and comply with procedures twice to get their products approved. The goal of this trade deal is to reduce unnecessary costs and delays for companies, while maintaining high levels of health, safety, consumer and environmental protection....The regulatory area is where the highest potential benefit lies with these trade negotiations.”
UKH2Mobility interim report finds potential for 1.6M hydrogen-powered vehicles on UK roads by 2030, with annual sales of 300K units
February 05, 2013
|UK consumer demand for FCEVs increases as the cost premium diminishes and the network of hydrogen refueling stations (HRS) expands. Source: UKH2Mobility. Click to enlarge.|
More than 1.5 million hydrogen-powered vehicles could be on UK roads by 2030, according to interim Phase I findings of the UKH2Mobility project, a joint Government-industry to evaluate the potential for hydrogen as a fuel for Ultra Low Carbon Vehicles in the UK before developing an action plan for an anticipated roll-out to consumers in 2014/15. (Earlier post.)
The forecast was made in an interim report commissioned to evaluate the benefits of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) and ensure the UK is well positioned for their commercial roll-out. The study provides a roadmap for the introduction of vehicles and hydrogen refueling infrastructure in the UK.
EU launches clean fuel strategy; EU-wide standards of equipment and binding targets for infrastructure
January 25, 2013
The European Commission announced a package of measures to ensure the build-up of alternative fuel stations across Europe with common standards for their design and use. Policy initiatives so far have mostly addressed the actual fuels and vehicles, without considering fuels distribution. Efforts to provide incentives have been un-co-ordinated and insufficient, the EC said.
Clean fuel adoption is being held back by three main barriers, the EC said: the high cost of vehicles; a low level of consumer acceptance; and the lack of recharging and refueling stations. Refueling stations are not being built because there are not enough vehicles; vehicles are not sold at competitive prices because there is not enough demand; and consumers do not buy the vehicles because they are expensive and the stations are not there. The Commission is therefore proposing a package of binding targets on Member States for a minimum level of infrastructure for clean fuels such as electricity, hydrogen and natural gas, as well as common EU wide standards for equipment needed.
Pike Research forecasts hybrids and plug-ins to grow to 4% of European market in 2020
January 02, 2013
|Pike’s projected vehicle sales by electrified drivetrain, European markets: 2012–2020. Click to enlarge.|
Pike Research forecasts that electric vehicles—conventional hybrids (HEVs), plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) and battery-electrics (BEVs)—will grow from 0.7% of the market in Europe in 2012 to 4% in 2020. While that is still a small portion of the market, it represents more than 827,000 vehicles per year, Pike notes. The biggest growth is expected in BEVs followed by PHEVs, with HEVs lagging behind.
Pike Research forecasts that by 2020 more than 1.8 million BEVs will be on Europe’s roadways, along with 1.2 million PHEVs and 1.7 million HEVs.
TU Dresden study on external costs of automotive transportation in Europe calls for internalization of the high external costs; raising user prices to change behavior
December 26, 2012
|Average external costs from cars per 1,000 vkm by country. Click to enlarge.|
A recent study from Technische Universität Dresden (TU Dresden) commissioned by the Greens/European Free Allianace (EFA) in the European Parliament concluded that the cars used within the EU-27 externalize up to about €373 billion (US$493 billion) per year (high estimate) of costs on to other people, other regions and other generations. The low estimate is external costs of €258 billion (US$341 billion).
The study focused on the larger environmental costs of car traffic (plus accident costs not covered by insurance)—i.e., air pollution; noise, upstream and downstream effects (covering all effects before and after the actual trip is performed); smaller other effects (land use, separational effects etc.); and climate change (focused on avoidance costs rather than damage costs). Neither infrastructure costs (area purchase, construction, maintenance, demolition, administration of infrastructure) nor congestion costs were included.
EC awards €1.2B from NER300 “Robin Hood” mechanism for 23 renewable energy projects; 5 advanced biofuel projects targeted for €516.8M
December 20, 2012
The European Commission awarded more than €1.2 billion (US$1.6 billion) funding to 23 highly renewable energy demonstration projects—including five advanced biofuels projects with maximum combined funding of €516.8 million (US$687 million), or 43% of the total—under the first call for proposals for the NER300 program.
Funding for the program comes from the sale of 300 million emission allowances from the New Entrants Reserve (NER) (hence the name) set up for the third phase of the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS). The funds from the sales are to be distributed to projects selected through two rounds of calls for proposals, covering 200 and 100 million allowances respectively.
Iveco to supply 115 natural gas Daily Vehicles to TNT Express Italy
December 07, 2012
|Iveco Daily Natural Power vehicles awaiting delivery. Click to enlarge.|
Iveco contracted to deliver 115 Daily Natural Power light commercial vehicles to TNT Express Italy by 2013. The methane gas-powered vehicles will be used by TNT for its express courier activities in the Rome area as well as other parts of Central Italy.
The New Daily Natural Power is equipped with a 100 kW, 3.0L, in-line 4-cylinder Fiat Powertrain Technologies (FPT) Industrial CNG engine with three-way catalytic converter, using a stoichiometric combustion regime that results in exhaust emissions well below the European EEV limits. The system can detect the composition of the gas used and is able to adapt the actual air/fuel ratio accordingly, in order to maintain low emissions without sacrificing performance.
American and European Standards organizations agree to strengthen transatlantic cooperation on standards for electric vehicles
December 06, 2012
Cooperation on eMobility standardization was the focus of discussion during a Transatlantic Roundtable organized by the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC), and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), which took place in Brussels on 28-29 November.
The event brought together technical experts from industry, government, and other stakeholders to compare and discuss standardization priorities for electric vehicles (EVs) outlined in the October 2011 Report of the CEN-CENELEC Focus Group on European Electro-Mobility and the April 2012 Standardization Roadmap for Electric Vehicles – Version 1.0, developed by the ANSI Electric Vehicles Standards Panel (EVSP). (Earlier post.)
EEA: Traffic pollution still harmful to health in many parts of Europe
November 27, 2012
|Trend in emissions of air pollutants from transport in EEA-32: PM2.5, CO, SOx, NMVOC, NOx. Source: EEA. Click to enlarge.|
Transport in Europe is still responsible for damaging levels of air pollutants and a quarter of EU greenhouse gas emissions, despite some progress in reducing the impacts from transport. Many of the resulting environmental problems can be addressed by stepping up efforts to meet new EU targets, according to the latest report from the European Environment Agency (EEA).
The EEA’s annual report under the Transport and Environment Reporting Mechanism (TERM) assesses the environmental impact of transport across Europe. There have been some improvements over recent years, although these can be partly attributed to reduced economic activity during the recession. As the economic climate improves, the new EU transport targets should focus efforts to further reduce environmental impacts, the report says.
Ford poll finds Europeans want freedom of car ownership, but worry about traffic, cost of driving, environment
November 14, 2012
A new Ford Motor Company-sponsored poll of 6,000 people across Europe found that most Europeans remain committed to car ownership, but have growing concerns about traffic congestion, the cost of driving and the environment. Ford commissioned the survey, conducted by the consultancy The Futures Company, to better understand the opinions and attitudes of Europeans across a range of mobility issues—from car sharing to green driving to the future of the internal combustion engine.
The Ford survey showed the majority of people say life would be “impossible” without a car; however 76% of Europeans say they are affected by stress from traffic congestion and fuel prices. The survey shows 74% use public transport, 37%share cars when making the same journey and 3% use formal car sharing schemes.
EC rolls out CARS 2020 action plan for European auto industry
November 08, 2012
Antonio Tajani, Vice President of the European Commission in charge of Industry and Entrepreneurship, introduced the EC’s CARS 2020 Action Plan aimed at reinforcing the European automotive industry’s competitiveness and sustainability heading towards 2020. The anticipated action plan comes at a time when the automotive industry is facing particular pressure due to a strong decline of the EU market and structural overcapacities. It is the first deliverable of the New European Industrial Policy outlined in an earlier communication.
This Action Plan is based on four pillars: investing in advanced technologies and financing innovation; improving market conditions; enhancing global competitiveness; and investing in human capital and skills and softening the social impacts of restructuring. With this strategy, the Commission intends to support the active role the automotive sector will play in seeking to reverse the declining share of industry in Europe from its current level of around 16% of GDP to as much as 20% by 2020.
Ford planning to cut 18% of production capacity, 13% of workforce in Europe; anticipating more than $1.5B loss in Europe in 2012
October 25, 2012
|New car registrations in the EU, 1990-2011. Source: ACEA. Click to enlarge.|
Addressing manufacturing overcapacity stemming from the more than 20% drop in total industry vehicle demand across Western Europe since 2007, Ford this week has outlined a series of cost efficiency actions including the planned closure of three European facilities: its Genk Plant (Belgium); a vehicle assembly plant in Southampton (UK), which builds the current Transit; and stamping and tooling operations in Dagenham (UK). The plans would reduce installed vehicle assembly capacity 18% or 355,000 units and would yield gross annual savings of $450 million to $500 million.
The actions—along with a previously announced initiative to reduce approximately 500 salaried and agency positions across Europe, with the Ford salaried reductions achieved voluntarily—affect 6,200 positions or about 13% of Ford’s European workforce.
EC proposes capping use of crop-based biofuels to 5% in meeting target of 10%; ILUC factors included
October 18, 2012
The European Commission has proposed limiting the use of crop-based biofuels to meet the 10% renewable energy target of the Renewable Energy Directive to 5%. This is to stimulate the development of alternative, second-generation biofuels from non-food feedstock, such as waste or straw, which emit substantially less greenhouse gases than fossil fuels and do not directly interfere with global food production.
Also, for the first time, the estimated global land conversion impacts&mdash Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC) factors—will be considered when assessing the greenhouse gas performance of biofuels. The proposal sets out indirect land-use change (ILUC) factors for different crop groups. Under the new rules, the estimated emissions from ILUC factors are to be included in Member States’ and fuel suppliers’ reporting of greenhouse gas savings under the Renewable Energy Directive and in the Fuel Quality Directive respectively.
Daimler balks at use of low GWP R-1234yf refrigerant, citing new internal safety findings; wants to continue using R-134a (updated)
September 25, 2012
Daimler announced that findings from a new internal investigation have raised questions on the safe usage of R-1234yf as a replacement refrigerant in mobile air conditioning (MAC) systems. Due to the new findings of this study and the high safety demands at Mercedes-Benz, Daimler says that it will not use this chemical in its products. The company stated that it therefore wishes to continue to use R-134a refrigerant in its vehicles.
Over the last several years, the automotive industry has been tracking to replace the mobile air conditioning (MAC) refrigerant R-134a, which has a global warming potential (GWP) of 1,430, with the lower-GWP refrigerant R-1234yf (GWP = 4). In 2009, for example, a two-year Cooperative Research Program conducted through SAE International to investigate the safety and environmental performance of R-1234yf concluded that it could can be used as the global replacement refrigerant in MAC systems and could be safely accommodated through established industry standards and practices for vehicle design, engineering, manufacturing, and service. The report was the third SAE report to evaluate the new refrigerant. (Earlier post.)
Toyota reduces fuel consumption and emissions across the new Auris range; 13% average reduction in CO2 compared to predecessors; gasoline, diesel and hybrid
September 19, 2012
Toyota is unveiling its new Auris for the European market (earlier post), representing its first step in a product offensive in the European C-Segment. Aerodynamic improvements, weight savings and engine enhancements have reduced fuel consumption and CO2 emissions across the range. Toyota anticipates a 1/3 full hybrid, 1/3 gasoline, 1/3 diesel engine mix.
Average emissions for Auris—which is designed for the European market—have fallen steadily over the last years. When the first generation Auris was launched in 2007, the average emissions were 152 g/km. This fell to 142 g/km in 2009, and then down to 125 g/km in 2011 after the pioneering full hybrid version was introduced. With the launch of the new Auris, the average CO2 emissions level will drop to 109 g/km, a further 13% reduction on average compared to the previous generation.
ICCT study finds European biofuel mandates without consideration of iLUC have a substantial probability of increasing net GHG emissions
September 18, 2012
A new study by Dr. Chris Malins of the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) finds that without including indirect Land Use Change (iLUC) factors (or some other effective iLUC minimization approach), European biofuel mandates are unlikely to deliver significant greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions benefits in 2020, and have a substantial probability of increasing net GHG emissions.
In contrast, he found, the implementation of iLUC factors is likely to significantly increase the carbon savings from EU biofuel policy. With iLUC factors, it is likely that most permitted pathways would conform to the Renewable Energy Directive requirement for a minimum 50% GHG reduction compared to fossil fuels.
Renault Trucks introducing medium- and heavy-duty Euro VI engines at IAA
September 12, 2012
|Euro VI-compliant DTI 11. Click to enlarge.|
Renault Trucks will present its Euro VI compliant engines at the IAA show in Hanover. These will equip its trucks when the new standard becomes compulsory in January 2014 (January 2013 for new homologations).
To comply with the new regulation, the manufacturer is using different technologies, choosing the most appropriate and efficient in regards to the engine’s size and future application. This strategy will enable Renault Trucks to pursue a number of different aims: supply its customers with Euro VI compliant engines, while at the same time offering competitive fuel economy , reliability and maintainability similar or superior to the previous Euro V engines.
Ford launching major new product push in Europe; fuel economy and 1.0L EcoBoost engine; first Ford full hybrid car for Europe
September 06, 2012
|The new Mondeo Hybrid is Ford’s first full hybrid car in Europe. Click to enlarge.|
At a “Go Further with Ford” event in Amsterdam, Ford Motor Company detailed plans for an aggressive product acceleration in Europe, targeting opportunities for growth in the large car, SUV and commercial vehicle segments while emphasizing fuel economy and enabling technologies such as the EcoBoost engines. Ford projects that two-thirds of all the company’s vehicles in Europe will be leaders, or among the very best, in terms of fuel efficiency by 2013.
The plans include launches of a new Fiesta, Europe’s best-selling small car and including the Fiesta ST performance car; the New Mondeo CD-segment car equipped with a segment-first 3-cylinder, 1.0-liter EcoBoost gasoline engine (earlier post) as well as a hybrid version of the vehicle—Ford’s first full hybrid car in Europe; new SUVs including the Kuga, EcoSport small SUV and Edge; a full redesign of the commercial vehicle range including new Transit, Transit Custom, Transit Connect and Transit Courier, plus a family of new Tourneo people carriers; and the entry of the Ford Mustang into Europe.
Renault, LG Chem and CEA preparing to sign three-way agreement concerning next-generation traction battery development and production; European plant, based in France
July 27, 2012
Renault, LG Chem and CEA (France’s Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission) are preparing to sign a three-way agreement in September concerning next-generation battery production.
In 2010, Renault and the CEA initiated a strategic partnership in the areas of clean vehicles and mobility. As part of this partnership, they signed several research agreements including a strategic cooperation contract for new battery technologies. Renault says that the results achieved by its R&D Laboratory and the CEA in new-generation batteries for electric vehicles have made it possible to enter the preparation phase for industrial production.
EC proposes 95 grams CO2/km target for new cars by 2020, 147 grams for light vans; super credits for cars below 35g
July 11, 2012
The European Commission today proposed targets for the further reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from new cars and light commercial vehicles (vans) by 2020. The proposals will cut average emissions from new cars to 95 grams of CO2 per km (g CO2/km) in 2020 from 135.7 grams in 2011 and a mandatory target of 130 grams in 2015. Emissions from vans will be reduced to 147g CO2/km in 2020 from 181.4 grams in 2010 (the latest year for which figures are available) and a mandatory target of 175 grams in 2017.
The proposals would amend two existing regulations establishing binding requirements for manufacturers to meet the 2015 mandatory target for cars and the 2017 target for vans. Implementing measures for the regulations are already in place and CO2 emissions from new vehicles are monitored annually.
European Commission launches €8.1B call for proposals for FP7 2013 work program
July 09, 2012
The European Commission launched the final and biggest ever set of calls for proposals for research under its Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). In total, €8.1 billion (US$10 billion) for the 2013 work program will support projects and ideas that will boost Europe’s competitiveness and tackle issues such as human health, protecting the environment and finding new solutions to growing challenges linked to urbanization and managing waste. Most of the calls for proposals will be published on 10 July, with some further specific calls to follow in the autumn.
The funding—which is open to organizations and businesses in all EU Member States and partner countries—represents the largest portion of the EU’s proposed €10.8-billion (US$13.3-billion) research budget for 2013.
Pike Research: Europe to have 4.1M EV charging stations by 2020, but needs to address country-specific variations
July 04, 2012
Europe will have more than 2.9 million plug-in vehicles PEVs on its roads by 2020 with more than 4.1 million EV charging stations (electric vehicle supply equipment, EVSE) to support them, according to a new report from Pike Research, “Electric Vehicle Charging Equipment in Europe”.
However, notes the report, the absence of a single alternating current (AC) EV charging connector standard has hampered the deployment of an EV charging infrastructure. The EU has declined to set a standard. The German industry has supported the Type 2 plug (the Mennekes connector) for more than two years, while French and Italian electric equipment manufacturers, united under the umbrella of the EV Plug Alliance—but without the support of a single car company—have supported the Type 3 plug. Renault sells the Fluence EV with a Type 3 connector in France and a Type 2 connector in Germany. If the European EV charging equipment market is to reach its potential, the reports asserts, “these multiple standards cannot last.”
NOx emissions exceeded limits in 12 European countries in 2010
July 02, 2012
|2010 NOx emissions (all sectors) and ceilings for 12 EU countries exceeding their limits. Source: EEA data viewer. Click to enlarge.|
Air pollution emitted from sources such as traffic, industry and households is still above internationally agreed limits in 12 European countries, according to newly published data. The accompanying report from the European Environment Agency (EEA) confirms an initial assessment published earlier this year, showing 12 EU Member States exceeded limits under the National Emissions Ceilings (NEC) Directive in 2010. (Earlier post.)
Under the NEC Directive, countries were obliged, by 2010, to meet ceilings for four important air pollutants: nitrogen oxides (NOx), non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOC), sulfur dioxide (SO2) and ammonia (NH3). These pollutants are harmful to both people and the environment, causing respiratory illnesses, acidifying soil and surface water, and damaging vegetation.
euroFOT study demonstrates how driver assistance systems can increase safety and fuel efficiency
June 26, 2012
|euroFOT brought together 28 partners testing 8 functionalities using more than 1,000 vehicles. Source: euroFOT. Click to enlarge.|
The euroFOT consortium published the findings of a four-year study focused on the impact of driver assistance systems in the Europe. The €22-million (US$27.4-million ) European Field Operational Test (euroFOT) project—which began in June 2008 and involved 28 companies and organisations—was led by Aria Etemad from Ford’s European Research Centre in Aachen, Germany.
The study looked at existing technologies and their potential to both enhance safety and reduce environmental impact. euroFOT also revealed a link between these systems and improvements in driver behavior, fuel efficiency and traffic safety, as well as overall cost savings.
EUCAR calls for targeted support for automotive initiatives in €80B Horizon 2020 program; targeting €5B budget
June 21, 2012
The European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR) is calling for a number of priority automotive research and innovation (R&I) initiatives in Europe’s Horizon 2020 program to support competitive and sustainable road transport and for these initiatives to be supported by a substantial €5-billion budget.
Horizon 2020 is the EU’s proposed €80-billion (US$100-billion) Framework Programme for Research & Innovation from 2014-2020. Rémi Bastien, Renault’s Senior Vice President of Research, Advanced Studies and Materials and 2012 Chairman of EUCAR, set out the association’s recommendations on Horizon 2020 to an audience of MEPs (Members of European Parliament) and stakeholders at a seminar in the European Parliament on 20 June.