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19 Feb 2019, 13:15
Julian Wettengel

EU agrees first-ever emissions standards for trucks

European Commission / Reuters

The EU institutions have provisionally agreed to reduce CO₂ emissions from new trucks and buses by 30 percent by 2030 compared to 2019, writes the European Commission in a press release. “With the first-ever EU emission standards for trucks agreed, we are completing the legal framework to reach the European target of cutting [total] greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 percent by 2030 [compared to 1990],” said Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete. The deal follows the agreement reached in December on new CO₂ emission standards for cars and light vans in the EU for the period after 2020. The European Parliament and the Council still have to formally approve the provisional agreement. Germany had pushed back against more ambitious limits.

Trucks and other freight vehicles are the backbone of Germany’s export-driven economy. But the rapid growth in traffic volumes increases the pressure of reaching emissions reductions in the transport sector, which already lags behind on fulfilling its climate targets. Over 95 percent of CO₂ emissions in Germany’s transport sector are caused by road traffic, and about one third of this is caused by long and short-distance road haulage. The EU currently has no limits on emissions from heavy-duty vehicles, unlike other countries, such as the United States, China, Japan and Canada, writes the news agency Reuters.

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