The CO2 emission limit for new light commercial vehicles sold in the EU is to be reduced from 203 g/km today to 147 g/km by 2020, under draft legislation approved by the European Parliament on Tuesday. The text, already informally agreed with EU ministers, also calls for the introduction of more reliable CO2 emission testing methods.
"We achieved a result after some difficult negotiations. I'm glad that we haven't yielded to any kind of pressure to change that target. As the lifespan of light commercial vehicles is longer than that of passenger cars, it is appropriate for us to stick to the target that we set ourselves", said Holger Krahmer (ALDE, DE), whose report was approved by 552 votes in favour, 110 against and 12 abstentions.
The 147g/km by 2020 target is for maximum average emissions authorised for the entire fleet of models made by each manufacturer registered in the EU of vans of up to 2.610 tonnes unladen and 3.5 tonnes laden. It will apply to manufacturers producing more than 1,000 vehicles per year.
Manufacturers will therefore have to produce enough cleaner models to outweigh heavier or more polluting vehicles in order to achieve an overall "balance" of 147 g/km by 2020, on pain of penalties.
No more “super credits” after 2018
To achieve their targets, manufacturers are to rely on a system of "super credits" which gives extra weighting to vehicles emitting less than 50 g/km of CO2. This system, which already exists, will not be renewed and will expire in 2018.
Towards more trustworthy testing methods
The approved text points to loopholes in the current environmental performance test protocol, which manufacturers have exploited to produce consumption and emission figures that are almost impossible to achieve under normal daily driving conditions.
MEPs sought to have today's protocol replaced as soon as possible by the new World Light Duty Test Procedure (WLTP), defined by the UN. In negotiations, they won an undertaking from the European Commission to bring the WLTP into effect at the earliest opportunity.
Procedure: Co-decision, first reading agreement