Business coalition calls for 2035 deadline for zero-emissions trucks in EU

A business coalition of 45 companies is calling upon the EU Commission in an open letter to ensure all new freight trucks are zero-emission from 2035. With exceptions until 2040 for so-called ‘vocational trucks’ in niches like construction, mining, and timber industry having specific driving patterns.

Among them are big names like Unilever, Henkel, PepsiCo, Siemens, Maersk, and DFDS. The Danish shipping company DFDS puts its money where its mouth is and has already ordered 125 e-trucks from Volvo Trucks lately.

The coalition writes that “the 2035 deadline is not just feasible but necessary to fully replace the fossil-powered truck fleet in time for the EU to reach climate neutrality by 2050”. And it urges the Commission to set stringent standards at intermediate intervals to ensure truck makers and the industry keep up the investments.

Review of standards

An ambitious review of the Heavy Duty Vehicle CO2 emission standards is crucial if Europe is serious about cleaning up trucking and maintaining its industry leadership in the commercial vehicle sector,” they write in the open letter.

“To this end, the signatories, a broad coalition of truck makers, transport operators, shippers and retailers, energy providers, infrastructure operators, and companies across the electromobility and the green hydrogen value chain call on the European Commission to provide investment certainty to the industry.”

They propose higher CO2 reduction targets for truck makers of -30% in 2027 and -65% in 2030 to ensure that the supply of cleaner trucks ramps up in the second half of this decade.

EV100 initiative

These 45 companies putting further pressure on the EU Commission with their open letter, are part of a much larger group of companies and organizations under the umbrella of the international non-profit Climate Group and the five-year-old EV100 initiative aimed at electrifying company car fleets.

The latter groups 127 of the world’s leading companies making commitments to transition their fleets to EVs and install EV charging for staff and customers by 2030. An ambitious goal, totaling some 5,5 million EVs by that time. Still, a long way to go, but with 40 000 company cars replaced by EVs over the past year, it today accounts for over 209 000 EVs globally.

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