EU pushes back CO2 targets for new cars

27th November 2013

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Mitigation ,
  • EU ,
  • Manufacturing ,
  • Other



Car manufacturers will have an extra 12 months to meet EU restrictions on carbon emissions from new vehicles, after member states negotiate compromise with MEPs

Under current European legislation (Regulation EC/443/2009), automotive manufacturers have to reduce the amount of CO2 emitted by new cars to 95g/km by 2020.

However, after months of political wrangling by council members over the 2020 deadline, led by Germany, the European parliament has agreed to a compromise that will mean only 95% of new cars will have to meet the 95gCO2/km target by 2020, with carmakers given until 2021 to ensure all vehicles meet the target.

The informal agreement has also changed rules with regards “super credits”, potentially allowing companies to offset more emissions from higher polluting cars in 2020.

Super credits mean that each car emitting 50gCO2/km or less will be counted as two vehicles in a manufacturer’s fleet in 2020, 1.67 in 2021 and 1.33 in 2022. This enables carmakers to reduce the average emissions of their fleet.

To prevent super credits from undermining potential carbon reductions, in June the European parliament set a limit on the use of super-credits at 2.5g per year. However, the new agreement states that manufacturers are able to claim credits of 7.5g between 2020–22, enabling them to claim three years’ credits in one year if they want.

Matthias Groote, chair of the European parliament’s environment committee, warned that members states’ attitude towards negotiating a delay to the targets set a “dangerous precedent”.

“We regret that some member states in the council have tried to delay confirmation of a deal,” he said. “This could have dragged the procedure out until the next parliament, while the automotive sector needs long-term certainty for its investments.

“We must ensure that this doesn’t happen again. Parliament has done its job, and we now expect the council to do likewise.”

The new agreement also means that manufacturers registering less than 1,000 cars in the EU each year are exempt from meeting any emissions target.

The member states did agree, however, that a 2025 target on emissions from new vehicles should be set by 2015.

Under EU targets average new car emissions must be less than 130gCO2/km in 2015. In 2012, average emissions from new cars in the UK stood at 133gCO2/km.


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.

Transform articles

A social conscience

With a Taskforce on Inequality and Social-related Financial Disclosures in the pipeline, Beth Knight talks to Chris Seekings about increased recognition of social sustainability

6th June 2024

Read more

Disinformation about the impossibility of averting the climate crisis is part of an alarming turn in denialist tactics, writes David Burrows

6th June 2024

Read more

David Symons, FIEMA, director of sustainability at WSP, and IEMA’s Lesley Wilson, tell Chris Seekings why a growing number of organisations are turning to nature-based solutions to meet their climate goals

6th June 2024

Read more

A system-level review is needed to deliver a large-scale programme of retrofit for existing buildings. Failure to do so will risk missing net-zero targets, argues Amanda Williams

31st May 2024

Read more

Chris Seekings reports from a webinar helping sustainability professionals to use standards effectively

31st May 2024

Read more

Although many organisations focus on scope 1 and 2 emissions, it is vital to factor in scope 3 emissions and use their footprint to drive business change

31st May 2024

Read more

IEMA submits response to the Future Homes Standard consultation

31st May 2024

Read more

What is the role for nature in the Climate Change Act? Sophie Mairesse reports

20th May 2024

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close