The Future of European Sustainable Mobility
The European Commission has proposed its European Green Deal that is intended to reset ‘the Commission’s commitment to tackling climate and environmental-related challenges.’ This Green Deal is based on a number of elements such as zero pollution, accelerating the shift to sustainable and smart mobility, and supplying clean, affordable and secure energy, as shown below.
For road transport, the European Commission’s ambition for zero air pollution is to be included as part of an action plan for air, water and soil in 2021.
The European Green Deal communication published in December 2019 says that the EU should ramp up the production and deployment of sustainable alternative transport fuels. It will support national measures and review the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive to accelerate the deployment of zero- and low-emission vehicles.
In order to make transport less polluting, the Commission is proposing to revise air pollutant emissions standards for vehicles with internal combustion engines and to revise the legislation on CO2 emissions standards for cars and vans. These changes will set out a pathway towards zero emission mobility.
AECC supports the Commission’s long-term ambition for zero pollution and increased greenhouse gas emission reductions. Clean air and greenhouse gas reduction are priorities for all of us.
Forecasts show that vehicles with an internal combustion engine (ICE) will remain a major element in the powertrain mix in 2030, with predictions varying from 50 to 90% of new car sales. A combination of advanced combustion engine and electric power sources in various forms of hybrid and plug-in vehicles are predicted to dominate the powertrain mix beyond the next decade.
AECC demonstrates emissions reductions are feasible through the use of advanced emission control systems and showed in May 2019 that can achieve near-zero emissions for NOx and particulates (mass and number) in real-world driving. These technologies are available already and will ensure a solid pathway from 2025 onwards, towards zero-emission mobility in 2050.
AECC believes that to achieve truly clean air in cities, the issue of the legacy vehicle fleet on European roads will have to be considered and thoroughly addressed by scrapping the most polluting vehicles.
AECC shares the Commission’s views on the need to ramp-up the production and deployment of sustainable road transport fuels and the consideration of legislative options to boost the production and uptake of these liquid or gaseous fuels. Sustainable fuels can directly impact on both the new and current fleet, accelerating the reduction of CO2 emissions.
Until zero tailpipe emission vehicles become the technology of choice for citizens across Europe, all technology choices should be supported and available on a fair and neutral basis to continue having a positive influence on air quality on the journey towards a zero emissions future. European citizens need to have mobility options which are accessible and affordable. Allowing the market to consider vehicles powered by combustion engines as part of the solution will help the European Commission deliver a Green Deal for more European citizens, leaving no-one behind and ensuring a just transition for the European industry and consumers