EEA: passenger car fleet CO2 emissions 12% lower in EU
The increasing demand for SUVs and the rebound of gasoline engines pushed CO2 emissions of new cars upward only three years ago. But that tide is changing. Research by the European Environmental Agency (EEA), the European watchdog for environmental affairs, concludes that CO2 emissions of new passenger cars have been pushed back by 12% in 2020.
The trend is a confirmation of previous conclusions. According to the Brussels-based NGO Transport & Environment (T&E), the stricter EU ruling on carbon emissions is taking effect but must be even stricter to force the whole industry to phase out the combustion engine by 2035.
Accordingly, this means that on average new cars were emitting 107,8 grams of CO2 per kilometer. The result ends higher than the theoretical average of 95 grams that the EU imposed on carmakers, but the downward curve demonstrates nonetheless that the ruling is showing an impact. The efforts of car manufacturers are starting to meet political goals.
Need for stricter standards
Sit back and relax then? Not according to T&E. The group keeps pushing for stricter CO2 targets. Road vehicles and e-mobility analysis manager at T&E Lucien Matthieu: “Some carmakers have already said when they will go fully electric, but stricter CO2 standards leading to zero emissions are needed to ensure the whole industry phases out fossil-fuel engines by 2035.”
The European Union is proposing new standards on the 14th of July. The question is whether stricter objectives are needed to reach zero-emission mobility in 2035 when gasoline and diesel cars will be banned completely.
Vans remain problematic
Are CO2 emissions of new cars to be met with light positivism, then that’s much less the case for the van sector. T&E points out that the reductions for LCVs fell by no more than a disappointing 1,5%. The organization adds that “van CO2 standards are so weak that most van makers are able to meet them without selling a single zero-emissions vehicle”.
The decarbonization of the van sector has basically remained a status quo during the past three years. But with the booming of e-commerce and home deliveries sales of these commercial vehicles are higher than ever before. So there is a gap there that needs to be met.
Together with a review of car emissions, the van standards are on the table. As part of the Green Deal Europe aims to reduce CO2 emissions for LCVs with 31% by 2030.