EU set to back 45pc cut target for CO2 from cars,vans by 2030

BRUSSELS: EU lawmakers are set to back a more ambitious carbon dioxide reduction target for fleets of cars and vans of 45 per cent by 2030, EU sources said on Friday. The draft rules to be voted on in the European Parliament’s Environment Committee on Monday evening would also set an interim goal of a 20-per cent reduction by 2025. Sources say the proposed revision of the EU executive’s initial draft target of 30 per cent by 2030 is backed by a majority of lawmakers in the committee, which tends to push for more ambitious climate legislation than the assembly as a whole.
But the European People’s Party (EPP), the biggest bloc in the chamber, favours the European Commission’s original proposal.
“It is not an easy legislation,” lawmaker Miriam Dalli said.
“Transport is the only major sector in the union where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising… we are thus aiming for a 45-per cent reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030.”
The EU’s new rules aim to help meet the bloc’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 per cent below 1990 levels by 2030. They will introduce a credit system for carmakers to encourage the rollout of electric vehicles and fines for exceeding CO2 limits.
A plenary session of parliament expected next month must still approve the assembly’s position in order to enter what will be tough talks with the bloc’s 28 governments on a final law, as nations with big automotive industries fear stricter rules could cost growth and jobs.
Volkswagen’s admission to US regulators in 2015 that it had masked tailpipe exhaust using software in as many as 11 million diesel vehicles sold worldwide has galvanised EU regulators into setting tougher climate rules.
When a recent EU study showed that carmakers were cheating new EU pollution checks to avoid a repeat of the Dieselgate scandal, many in Brussels voiced frustration.
To tackle the problem, EU lawmakers have added an amendment calling laboratory emissions tests to be checked against on-road ones or, failing that, readings from fuel consumption meters.
Other proposed amendments are still being debated by lawmakers. These include whether renewable fuels will be allowed to count towards zero-emission targets and whether to allow industry to combine their targets for cars and vans.
European automakers association ACEA has called for laxer CO2 limits, saying poor infrastructure and an underdeveloped consumer market limit their ability to sell more electric cars.
“We cannot push these electric cars down people’s throats,” said ACEA Secretary-General Erik Jonnaert, calling for a 20-per cent reduction target.
Climate groups, however, say it is up to automakers to do more to market electric vehicles. — Reuters