On Thursday, 27 October, the European Parliament and the Council reached a provisional agreement on revised CO2 emissions reduction targets for new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles, one of the first rules agreed upon as part of the ‘Fit for 55’ Package.
EU negotiators secured an agreement with the Member States on the European Commission’s original proposal to reach zero-emission road mobility by 2035 (an EU fleet-wide target to reduce the CO2 emissions produced by new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles by 100% compared to 2021). It is the first deal of the “Fit for 55” package and a clear signal ahead of the UN COP27 Climate Change Conference that the EU is serious about adopting concrete laws to reach the more ambitious targets set out in the EU Climate Law.
Assessing life-cycle emissions and progress towards zero-emission road mobility
Parliament succeeded in introducing a methodology for the assessment and data reporting of full life-cycle CO2 emissions of cars and vans sold on the EU market. The Commission will present this methodology by 2025, with legislative proposals where appropriate.
The Commission will also publish a report by the end of 2025 and every two years thereafter to evaluate progress towards zero-emission road mobility. The report will cover the impact on consumers and employees, the progress in energy efficiency and affordability of zero- and low-emission vehicles, as well as information on the market for second-hand vehicles.
Aligning emission limit values with real-world emissions
The Commission will monitor and report annually the gap between the emission limit values and the real-world fuel and energy consumption data, with the aim to adjust the manufacturer’s average specific emissions of CO2 as of 2030.
Funding to ensure a just transition in the automotive sector
Under the deal, existing EU funding should be channelled to transitioning to zero-emission vehicles and related technologies, and especially towards SMEs along the automotive supply chain and vulnerable regions and communities.
Other measures are foreseen by the regulation:
- The incentive mechanism for zero- and low-emission vehicles (‘ZLEV’) is revised with a higher benchmark in order to ensure that it is aligned with the current sales trends and brings affordable zero-emissions cars on the EU market;
- Manufacturers responsible for small production volumes in a calendar year (1,000 to 10,000 new cars or 1,000 to 22,000 new vans) may be granted a derogation until the end of 2035 (those responsible for less than 1,000 new vehicle registrations per year continue to be exempt);
- Existing rules for labelling of fuel economy and CO2 emissions for cars should be reviewed by the end of 2024.
“With these targets, we create clarity for the car industry and stimulate innovation and investments for car manufacturers. In addition, purchasing and driving zero-emission cars will become cheaper for consumers. I am pleased that today we reached an agreement with the Council on an ambitious revision of the targets for 2030 and supported a 100% target for 2035. This is crucial to reach climate neutrality by 2050 and make clean driving more affordable,” says Rapporteur Jan Huitema (Renew, NL).
Rapporteur Jan Huitema will brief the media on the details of the deal on Friday, 28 October at 9.30 CEST, in Parliament’s Anna Politkovskaya press conference room in Brussels (SPAAK A050). Journalists wishing to participate remotely and ask questions are invited to connect via Interactio. The press conference will also be webstreamed here.
Parliament and Council will have to formally approve the agreement before it can come into force.
On 14 July 2021, as part of the ‘Fit for 55’ package, the Commission presented a legislative proposal for a revision of the CO2 emission performance standards for new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles. The proposal aims to contribute to the EU 2030 and 2050 climate objectives, deliver benefits to citizens and stimulate innovation in zero-emission technologies.