European Parliament votes to improve fuel efficiency of new cars

The European Parliament's Environment Committee today voted for new cars sold to achieve an average fuel economy of 95g per kilometre, or 3.9 litres per 100km, by 2020 from the current 130 grams.

To achieve the reduction, the Environment Committee said that clean-car innovation should be encouraged by giving “super-credit” weightings to each manufacturer’s cleaner cars and by setting more ambitious longer-term reduction targets.

MEPs approved a draft law setting out rules for achieving the 95g target by 47 votes to 17 with 1 abstention, but also added indicative targets for post-2020 CO2 emissions – a range of 68-78g from 2025.

Environmental performance testing methods should also be made more realistic, as a matter of urgency, the Committee said.

NGO Transport & Environment’s (T&E) programme manager for clean vehicles, Greg Archer, said: “This vote helps stop oil waste, fight climate change, and create high tech jobs. CO2 standards for cars show how environmental law is not only good for the planet but also creates widespread economic and societal benefits.”

“The indication of a 2025 target range is real progress, but we need 2.5 litres per 100km to stimulate the shift to zero-carbon cars,” he added.

Archer said that Member States must now follow the direction of the Environment Committee of the European Parliament to ensure that Europe reaps all the benefits of the law.

The vote is a key driver for lowering the EU’s environmental impact, as cars are responsible for around 12% of total EU emissions of CO2.

Leigh Stringer

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