Stronger car-emission laws and a Real Driving Emissions test are needed in the EU, say S&Ds
Harmful levels of air pollution are causing over 400,000 premature deaths per year across the European Union, and existing legislation does not efficiently improve air quality. This is why the S&D Group today backed important measures to limit toxic emissions in all new motor vehicles sold in the EU in a vote in the environment committee.
The European Commission is now reviewing its legislation for light duty and heavy duty vehicles to ensure that levels of the following harmful pollutants will be reduced: nitrogen dioxide (No2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), particulate matter (dust), methane and ammonia.
The S&D spokesperson on this file, Miriam Dalli MEP said:
"Today we successfully overcame attempts to water down the Commission’s proposal. We opposed the inclusion of big vehicles of up to 7.5 tonnes in the category of light duty vehicle and retained the weight at 5 tonnes.
"We want to review the methane emission levels because it is a strong greenhouse gas. And we also call for a nitrogen dioxide limit based on a detail impact assessment. We should not turn a blind eye to the fact that current Euro 6 diesel vehicles on average emit seven times their official limit for nitrogen oxides.
"Legislation must be based on reality, so that we avoid fiascos like the Volkswagen one. This is why we strongly call for a Real Driving Emissions (RDE) tests which would be stringent and implemented as soon as possible whilst making sure that no loopholes exist for car manufacturers to circumvent their responsibilities".
S&D spokesperson on the environment, Matthias Groote MEP, said:
"The current tests that check the driving emissions are not accurate, as the testing situation in a laboratory setting does not show the real driving conditions. There is an overdue need to reform the current test procedures and introduce the new Real Driving Emissions test.
"With regards to the recent VW scandals it is even more important to ensure more realistic and reliable test cycles. The European Parliament and foremost the Socialists and Democrats have been fighting for more stringent emission limits.
"Moreover, the new RDE test has to ensure that emissions on paper reflect emissions in reality."