More breathing room thanks to stricter European emissions standards

3 October 2018

“Our citizens are entitled to clean air. More no-emissions and low-emissions cars contribute to this.” MEP Mark Demesmaeker is satisfied with the new CO2 emissions standards approved by the European Parliament. By 2030, cars and commercial vehicles will have to emit 40% less carbon dioxide. What’s more, by then 35% of the new fleet will have to consist of no-emissions and low-emissions cars. “These new standards are ambitious, but sorely needed and realistic too,” says Mark Demesmaeker.

Reduction of emissions in the transport sector

The climate goals are the top concern in the new standards. “According to the agreements on climate, Belgium will have to emit 35% less CO2 by 2030. Weak emissions standards undermine those goals. In Belgium, transport is responsible for a quarter of CO2 emissions. It therefore goes without saying that we are reducing the emissions of the transport sector drastically in order to comply with the international climate agreements. Without the necessary technology, that will be very difficult. “

Greening of the fleet

For that technology, MEP Demesmaeker is turning to the car manufacturers. “Instead of investing in cheat software, they should be turning all their attention to the greening of the car fleet. More no-emissions and low-emissions cars contribute to better air quality,” Mark Demesmaeker explains. The ambitious standards are intended to lead to more and cheaper green cars in Europe in the medium to longer term.

More breathing room

The standards still have to be negotiated with the member states. That won’t be a walk in the park, says Mark Demesmaeker: “Germany apparently wants to tone down the ambition. But if Europe really wants to take on the competition with China, our manufacturers will have to offer enough low-carbon and emissions-free cars. Incidentally the parliamentary proposal provides for a serious reduction in fuel consumption, which will give the consumer more breathing room in terms of budget as well.”

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