The EU has proposed new regulations to reduce carbon emissions from passenger vehicles by one third within the next eight years. This means that by 2020, if the new regulations are accepted, the average emissions from new cars will have to be less than 95 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometer driven, a substantial drop from today’s levels of 145 grams.
In order to be finalized, the proposed regulations would have to be accepted by member states and the EU parliament.
The ultimate goal of the new regulations is to reduce the carbon footprint of the automobile industry – which makes sense, since the EU intends on making huge carbon reductions by 2050. Additionally, consumers will save about €340 in fuel costs per year, or €2,900 and €3,800 over a vehicle’s average lifetime.
However, the new regulations have received a cold reception from both car manufacturers and environmentalists.
Automobile companies have been lobbying against the new regulations in Brussels, claiming that the proposed carbon reductions would create high costs in research and development over the next several years.
However, many environmentalists are claiming the new regulations are creating loopholes for manufacturers of bigger (or more powerful) vehicles – particularly in Germany. The regulation is set up in such a way to impose less drastic cuts for large vehicles, such as the Germany’s Daimler or BMW. As a result, manufacturers of smaller, lighter vehicles will be forced to contribute more to carbon reduction.
Greenpeace claims that if accepted, the new regulations will not provide enough incentive for manufacturers to produce lighter cars.
What are your thoughts on the EU’s proposed regulations for passenger vehicles? Are they taking a step in the right direction?
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