A group of 7 European Union (EU) countries has collectively called upon the European Commission to create and set stricter limits on carbon dioxide emissions from vehicles. This comes ahead of the introduction of new standards by the European Union executive next month.
The 7 countries in question — representing countries without significant auto manufacturing industries, you might be shocked to discover — are calling upon the Commission to introduce targets to reduce passenger car and van emissions by 40% by 2030. It’s been reported that the Commission is planning to set a target of reducing those emissions by only 25–35% by 2030.
Needless to say, the 7 countries in question — Austria, Ireland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal, Luxembourg, and Slovenia — represent a considerably less formidable lobbying block than the one representing countries with large auto industries (e.g., Germany, France, and Italy).
The argument from the auto manufacturing countries is of course that if the targets and regulations are too “ambitious,” they will represent too much of a “burden” on industry.
“Without ambitious targets, the EU will struggle to meet its climate goals, they wrote in a letter to the Commission on October 25, seen by Reuters. The transport and environment ministers of Luxembourg, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal, Ireland and Slovenia signed the letter,” Reuters reports.
“Since Volkswagen admitted to cheating on emission tests in the United States, large car manufacturing nations have also been under greater pressure to accept tougher EU regulation of the industry. European carmakers say they support the introduction of cleaner vehicles but warned they depend on consumer demand.
“The Commission’s proposal due on November 8 is expected to set a benchmark for carmakers to introduce zero-emission vehicles into their fleets as part of a crediting system linked to the overall CO2 targets.”
Those plans and the new CO2 standards for passenger cars and vans are intended to function as part of the European Union’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40% (as compared to 1990 levels) by 2030.