CO2 can drop faster than carmakers claimed

A new study has shown that average CO2 emissions from cars dropped a record 5.1 per cent last year. Over half of this was due to improvements in technology, rather than simply being the result of the purchase of smaller cars. The environmental group Transport & Environment, who authored the report, argues that this drop discredits the lobbying of carmakers, who earlier successfully pushed to have a new target on car CO2 emissions delayed to 2015.

If current rates of improvement continue, the car industry will likely meet the CO2 target of 130g/km by 2012, the date originally proposed by the Commission and which carmakers claimed was unrealistic. Some carmakers have already almost met the 2015 target, with Toyota cars averaging 132g/km.

Carmakers are currently lobbying to delay and weaken CO2 targets for vans. "Three years ago the car industry said it could not deliver car CO2 targets on time but is now set to achieve them years ahead of schedule. Now the same industry is saying van CO2 limits cannot be met; it is time the credibility of these claims was questioned," said Joe Dings, director of Transport & Environment.

Source: T&E press release 4 November 2010.

In this issue