Transport is responsible for a quarter of Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions, with air pollution causing almost 400,000 premature deaths in Europe each year. To help accelerate the transition to low-emission vehicles, on 8 November the European Commission released the new ‘Clean Mobility Package’.
The legislative package aims at reducing greenhouse gases and air pollutant emissions in the transport sector, and at promoting the market uptake of alternative fuels and low-emission vehicles. The initiative should also support the competitiveness of the European car manufacturers to face the challenges coming from China and the USA.
The proposal sets a target of a 15% CO2 emissions cut by 2025 and 30% by 2030 for both cars and vans registered in the EU, compared to 2021.
Despite the Commission’s statements about its ambition, the proposal drew criticism from several sides.
Environmental NGOs criticise the lack of a mandatory quota for zero-emissions vehicles, which they believe is the best way to encourage the development of this means of transport. They also consider the 30% target is too low and its implementation too slow.
In this regard, Belgian Member of the European Parliament Kathleen Van Brempt (S&D) said “The 15% reduction target by 2025 and 30% by 2030 is absolutely unacceptable. As far back as 2013, the European Parliament recommended an ‘indicative range’ of 68-78 g/km as soon as 2025, which is already a 30% reduction. In the Commission’s proposal, this 30% reduction will only be met five years later.”
On the other hand, the European car industry deems the 30% reduction level proposed by the Commission “overly challenging” and the plan proposed in the legislative package “too aggressive”.
The Clean Mobility Package includes the following documents:
• New CO2 standards to help manufacturers to embrace innovation and supply low-emission vehicles to the market
• Clean Vehicles Directive to promote clean mobility solutions in public procurement tenders
• An action plan and investment solutions for the trans-European deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure
• The revision of the Combined Transport Directive, which promotes the combined use of different modes for freight transport (e.g. lorries and trains)
• Directive on Passenger Coach Services, to stimulate the development of bus connections over long distances across Europe
• The battery initiative for vehicles and other mobility solutions of tomorrow to be invented and produced in the EU.
Read more about the Clean Mobility Package