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31 October 2017

Seven EU countries urged the European Commission for stricter vehicle carbon emissions standards

A group of EU countries comprising Austria, Ireland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal, Luxembourg, and Slovenia has written a letter to the European Commission asking for stricter limits on vehicle emissions standards, ahead of the induction of new standards next month.

The letter asked for the Commission to introduce targets to reduce passenger car and van emissions by 40 percent by 2030, while it has been reported by the Reuters news agency that the Commission is planning to set a target of reducing this category of emissions by 25-35 per cent by 2030.

The letter claims that without ambitious targets the EU will struggle to meet its climate goals. On the other hand, car manufacturing countries argue that too ambitious targets will put a burden on the industry.

The European Commission is expected to publish its proposals on November 8 and is anticipated to set the guidelines for all carmakers to introduce zero-emission vehicles into their fleets as part of a crediting system associated with the overall European carbon reduction targets.

The European Union has set a 40 per cent emissions reduction target by 2030, as compared to 1990 emission levels.

The ‘Euro 1’ emissions standards from vehicles were first introduced in 1992, aiming at improving air quality.

Since then, the European Union has passed a series of emissions standards that led to the current “Euro 6”, which was introduced in September 2014.

The regulations are designed to become more stringent over time and define acceptable limits for exhaust emissions of new light-duty vehicles.

Among European countries, France has announced a ban on sales of new petrol and diesel cars by 2040 and Germany is ‘considering’ setting a date for a diesel ban as soon as its national car industry can adapt to the new requirements.

France was the first country to announce an ambitious ban on diesel sales by 2040,shortly followed by the UK.

Scotland has set an even more ambitious diesel phase-out target, by 2032.  

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