EU deal on cleaner and cheaper cars

Last night a deal was reached between MEPs and national ministers in Brussels on EU targets to reduce CO2 emissions in cars.

The deal confirms the 2020 target of 95g CO2/km and puts a cap on super credits that are used to reward manufacturers of polluting cars if they also produce low carbon cars such as electric, hydrogen and hybrid vehicles. 

The leader of the UK Liberal Democrat MEPs and European energy spokesperson Fiona Hall said:

“This deal will not only give much needed certainty to manufacturers and boost the production of low carbon cars; it will also benefit drivers by making cars more fuel efficient and cheaper to run. Continue reading

Davies: Tories blow second chance on business carbon vote

Chris Davies MEPConservative MEPs got a second opportunity to help British business today – and once again blew it.

In April, the European Parliament voted on a proposal to backload the continent’s Emissions Trading Scheme that sets a price for industrial carbon dioxide emissions in an effort to combat climate change.  The vote was lost be 334-315 with British Tory MEPs voting against.

Today, the Environment Committee of the European Parliament voted again on the measure, sending it back to the full parliament for another attempt to pass the legislation.

Tory MEPs voted against backloading despite knowing that carbon prices in the UK leave UK manufacturers paying more for their electricity than their EU competitors and the EU plans would have reduced that gap.

Their votes pu tUK manufacturing industry at a disadvantage compared to Germany or the Netherlands.

Speaking after the Environment Committee’s 2-1 endorsement of the plan UK Lib Dem MEP Chris Davies MEP said, “Conservative MEPs have turned their back on the future and shown their contempt both for the needs of British industry and the policies of the coalition government. Continue reading

Davies/ Hall: Conservative MEPs betray British business in carbon vote

MEPs in Strasbourg today narrowly (334-315) rejected a proposal by the European Commission to delay the auctioning of greenhouse gas allowances to avoid a further drop in the price of carbon. The European Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) was originally introduced to incentivise investments in low carbon technologies by putting a price on polluting greenhouse gas emissions.

UK Liberal Democrat MEP Chris Davies, the environment spokesman for the Liberal Democrat (ALDE) group in the European Parliament, commented after the vote:

“MEPs have turned their back on the future.  Continue reading

Davies: Commission calls Daimler’s bluff

Chris Davies MEPThe European Commission has warned that new model types of Daimler cars put on the market anywhere in Europe do not conform to EU law and should not be sold.

The announcement could inflict huge damage upon Daimler’s finances and reputation.

Industry Commissioner Antonio Tajani will appear in front of the Environment Committee tonight (20 March 17.30-18.30) to discuss the enforcement of the mobile air conditioning (MAC) directive, applicable since 1 January 2013. Continue reading

Hall: MEPs push for more fuel efficient and less polluting cars

Fiona Hall MEPLiberal Democrat MEP Fiona Hall welcomed today’s vote in the European Parliament’s Industry Committee to renew the procedure in which vehicles are tested on their emissions and fuel efficiency.

Current tests do not take place under real life conditions and turn a blind eye to the practice of taping over cracks around the doors and grill, over-inflated tyres, adjusting the wheel alignment and brakes, using special super-lubricants, minimising the weight of the vehicle, testing at altitude and at unrealistically high temperatures and on super-slick test-tracks.

Ms Hall was responsible for drafting a report in the Industry Committee on measures to help reach the EU’s 2020 targets of cutting CO2 emissions for passenger cars. Commenting after the vote, she said: Continue reading