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2005/0283(COD) - 19/12/2007 Legislative proposal

PURPOSE: to promote clean and energy efficient road vehicles in order to reduce fuel consumption.

PROPOSED ACT: Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council.

BACKGROUND: manufacturers are not inclined to produce special, energy efficient, vehicles that respond to local or national incentives only. Action is therefore needed at a Community level in order to encourage the kind of investment needed to encourage manufactures to produce less polluting and more energy-efficient products. Obliging public authorities to purchase vehicles that fulfil higher environmental standards is an incentive to the manufacturers to produce clean and energy efficient road vehicles.

To recall, in December 2005, the Commission proposed a Directive on the promotion of clean vehicles through public procurement. The main focus of this proposal was on heavy duty vehicles. It required that 25% of all heavy duty vehicles (buses etc.) purchased by public authorities needed to comply with the existing Enhanced Environmentally friendly Vehicle (EEV) standard. Following the first reading of this proposal, both Parliament and Council proposed a broader approach in the range of vehicles covered and in the stated objectives of the proposal. On 21 June 2006, the European Parliament’s Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, adopted a legislative Resolution rejecting the initial Commission proposal.  As a result of this development the Commission is re-submitting its proposal taking account of Parliamentary and Council views.

CONTENT: the purpose of this proposal is to promote clean and energy efficient vehicles. It intends to realise this objective by focussing specifically on award criteria in the public procurement of road transport vehicles. Thus, any award criteria in the procurement of road transport vehicles must include an operational lifetime analysis of costs relating to:

  • Energy consumption;
  • CO2 emissions; and
  • Pollutant emissions.

The same costs criteria apply to the purchase of such vehicles by operators under contract, licence, permit or authorisation granted by public authorities.

The “costs” of energy consumption, CO2 and pollutant emissions will be “monetised” and calculated according to a methodology set out in the proposed Directive. This methodology includes, for example:

  • Energy consumption: the fuel consumption per kilometre of a vehicle will be converted into energy consumption per kilometre; a single monetary value per unit of energy will be the lower of the cost per unit of energy of petrol or diesel before tax and when used as a transport fuel; and a lifetime cost of the energy consumption for the operation of a vehicle will be calculated by multiplying the lifetime mileage with the energy consumption per kilometre and by the cost per unit of energy.
  • CO2 emissions: The lifetime cost for the CO2 emissions of a vehicle will be calculated by multiplying the lifetime mileage with the CO2 emission in kilograms per kilometre.
  • Pollutant emissions: The lifetime cost for the pollutant emission will be calculated by adding up the lifetime costs for emissions of oxides of nitrogen, non-methane hydrocarbons and particulate matter.

Fuel consumption, CO2 emissions and pollutant emission per kilometre will be based on standardised EU test procedures.

The proposal complements other EU measures on pollutant emission standards, CO2 emission reduction through the setting of fleet limits, labelling and fiscal measures and on the promotion of market introduction of alternative fuels, such as biofuels. It will also help towards achieving the set targets for overall energy efficiency improvements.