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European Parliament proposes 40% cut in new car CO2 by 2030; acceleration of sales of electric and low-emission cars

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) approved a proposal which would set a higher target for reducing EU fleet-wide emissions for new cars by 2030 of 40% (compared to the EU Commission’s 30%; year of reference 2021) with an intermediate target of 20% by 2025. Similar targets are set for new vans. Market uptake of electric and low- emission cars should also accelerate, said MEPs.

Manufacturers whose average CO2 emissions exceed these targets will pay a fine to the EU budget, to be used for up-skilling workers affected by changes in the automotive sector, the MEPs agreed.

Carmakers will also have to ensure that zero- and low- emission vehicles—ZLEVs (electric cars or vehicles which emit less than 50g CO2/km)—have a 35% market share of sales of new cars and vans by 2030, and 20% by 2025.

The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) quickly voiced serious concerns about the outcome of the plenary vote on the future CO2 reduction targets.

We remain particularly concerned about the extremely aggressive CO2 reduction targets and the imposition of sales quotas for battery electric vehicles that MEPs have backed. Today’s vote risks having a very negative impact on jobs across the automotive value chain. It would essentially force the industry into a dramatic transformation in record time.

—ACEA Secretary General, Erik Jonnaert

ACEA also noted that there was a very tight majority on some crucial issues.

Further, the association noted, there is no guarantee that the right enabling framework is in place to facilitate this sudden transition to electromobility. Currently recharging infrastructure is severely lacking, and consumer incentives to purchase the more expensive electric vehicles remain unharmonized across the EU.

Consumers cannot be forced to buy electric cars, without the necessary infrastructure or incentives in place. We can only hope that national governments bring some realism to the table when adopting their common position on the future CO2 targets next week.

—Erik Jonnaert

Parliament also called on the EU Commission to table, within two years, plans for a real-world CO2 emissions test using a portable device, similar to that recently introduced for NOx. Until then, CO2 emissions must be measured based on data from the cars’ fuel consumption meters. The real-driving emissions test must be up and running from 2023, say MEPs.

The MEPs acknowledged that a transition towards zero-emission mobility requires changes throughout the automotive value chain, with possible negative social impacts. The MEPs suggested that the EU promote skill development and reallocation of workers in the sector, particularly in regions and communities most affected by the transition. MEPs also call for support for European battery manufacturing.

The report was adopted with 389 votes to 239 and 41 abstentions. EU ministers will adopt their common position on 9 October. Negotiations with MEPs for a first reading agreement would then start on 10 October.



This is ridiculous.  The obvious goal is a fleet that is almost entirely BEV... but the radical spread in CO2/kWh across different countries makes it pointless to go BEV without cleaning up the electric supply, and that's specifically NOT being done in the "greenest" countries like Germany (560 gCO2/kWh, higher than the USA) and Denmark.  Both rely heavily on coal to this day, and all because they are paranoid about nuclear power!  The places where BEVs make the most sense ecologically are countries like Norway (all hydro), Sweden (~20 gCO2/kWh) and France (58 gCO2/kWh).  The latter get most of their non-hydro generation from nuclear.

The only real solution is to sentence every anti-nuclear activist, propagandist or sloganeer to public flogging until they admit their lies and apologize to the public.


@EP, well said. Your plan for the anti-nukes may be a bit harsh, but we had a solution to global warming there and they made sure that it could not be used.
The craziest thing was the Germans turning off the nukes they already had running - just plain mad, IMO. At least the developing world is getting on with nukes - they don't have the same level of irrational fear of nukes that we have.
Getting to 50% renewables in the electricity supply should be easy enough (with wind, solar and transmission lines, and storage to stabilise the grid), but beyond that, it gets harder (unless you have a lot of hydro).
However, they should use gas to balance the grid, rather than coal which is the worst in terms of CO2, radiation, etc.


Since current grand transport vehicles are responsible for 41+% of pollution and GHGs, this is an excellent decision even if it could block imports of polluting large SUVs and Pick-Ups from USA.

The same could/should be done for power generation plants to force CPPs and NGPPs replacements with REs.


No, Harvey.  This is orthogonal to solving the climate problem (meaning, "greenwashing").

If you charge a BEV consuming 180 Wh/km from a grid with an average CO2 emissions rate of 560 gCO2/kWh, each km driven indirectly emits 101 gCO2.  This is more than twice the 50 g/km ZLEV standard.  No BEV charged from a "green" grid in Europe can even get close to that standard; not in Germany, not even in Denmark.  But in France and Sweden, no problem!

The difference is nuclear power.  Nuclear eliminates CO2 emissions; "renewables" provably do not.


Several points: 1) The tech is in the car is already future proof. When the electricity becomes clean, the cars dont have to "change at all" they will simply consume the greener energy. This is called iterative change. Pulled from the software world. Big auto and other legacy domains are slowly seeing its benefits. But they are too monolithic and archaic to be able to react to this. Evolution will take care of this.
2) Solar prices are dropping all the time. Together w/ battery storage they are becoming a viable alternative to natural gas peaker and cc plants. With tech always improving in the future, things can become all solar + wind. Without going down this route, money will not be invested and we will never know. Good regulation should (like this one) should always push the world toward cleaner tech. There will always be naysayers (no world is flat....)
3) Customers do want EV cars. Big Auto falsely advertises or doesnt market EVs at all. Go to any big auto dealer and ask them to test drive an EV. Most likely they will tell you its not charged and not available for a test drive. Big auto if left alone will not lift a finger to move to a sustainable future. Its up to citizens who care to act on this.

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