The European Commission adopted a communication entitled “A European strategy on clean and energy efficient vehicles” on 28 April 2010.

The strategy aims to help the European car industry strengthen its leading role globally by basing its production on clean and energy-efficient technologies.

It delivers on the consensus between Member States and European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani‘s commitment to move on from short-term recovery measures to a medium-term orientation that strengthens the competitiveness of the European automotive industry by linking it to clean technologies.

The strategy also contributes to the Europe 2020 objectives of smart and sustainable growth. It contains an Action Plan composed of concrete and ambitious measures to be implemented by the Commission.

Commissioner Tajani said: “In 2010 the automotive industry enters into a defining phase for its future success. The new European strategy will provide a supportive framework based on a twin-track approach: improving the efficiency of conventional engines and making ultra low-carbon mobility a reality for European consumers. Including all types of vehicles in the strategy will ensure that this parallel approach will strike the right balance between securing the future competitiveness of our car manufacturing industry without compromising our long-term goals for the reduction of greenhouse gases and other pollutants. The strategy also aims at achieving common standards for electrical cars so that they can be charged everywhere in the EU.”

Important national and regional actions are currently being taken by the Member States and by EU’s global partners to promote the mass production and market uptake of green vehicles. In parallel the momentum is building with the industrial plans for the mass market dominance of the fuel-efficient conventional vehicles and an important roll-out of electric vehicles in 2011. With the new strategy the Commission wants to provide an impetus on the European level and seize the full potential of green vehicles to contribute to the fight against climate change to reduce Europe’s oil dependency and revitalise Europe’s industrial fabric.

The Commission will inter alia:

  • continue its legislative programme on vehicle emission reduction including its mid term review;
  • support research and innovation in green technologies;
  • propose guidelines for demand-side incentives.

The strategy builds on European leadership in the fight against climate change and establishes bases for European leadership in clean transport.

While the communication does not make any technological choices it recognises that until now the European framework has been mostly lacking on electric mobility. With electric vehicles (including hybrids) currently viewed as ready for the mass market and several Member States notably France Spain Germany Portugal and Denmark promoting electromobility a number of actions announced in the Communication focus on enabling this technology by:

  • ensuring that alternative propulsion vehicles are at least as safe as conventional ones;
  • promoting common standards that will allow all electric vehicles to be charged anywhere in the EU;
  • encouraging the installation of publicly accessible charging points;
  • promoting the development of smart electricity grids;
  • updating the rules and promoting research on recycling of batteries.

For the full list of actions please click here

The Commission looks forward to implementing the strategy by working with the Spanish and Belgian presidencies and by re-launching the CARS 21 high-level group.

Useful links

European Commission’s website on European strategy on clean and energy efficient vehicles
To follow the legislative progress of the Commission communication entitled “A European strategy on clean and energy efficient vehicles” click here
To read the original press release click here


Link to original Article

Original Publication Date: Mon 26 Jul 2010