Car industry supports reducing CO2 emissions

The European automobile manufacturers support the EU objective of further reducing average car emissions to 120 grammes carbon dioxide (CO2) per kilometre by 2012. Crucial for the future of the industry, however, is how this target is achieved. Controlling climate change is a complex and global challenge and needs concerted efforts embracing all areas of society. Placing the burden mainly on the car industry, as the European Commission has proposed in its February 2007 CO2 Communication, is the most expensive strategy. It will lead to a diminished level of vehicle manufacturing in Europe with, as yet, unclear economic consequences. The appropriate solution to reduce CO2 emissions from cars and to safeguard jobs and investments in Europe is an integrated approach, combining further improvements in vehicle technology, an increased use of alternative fuels, improved infrastructure and traffic management, a more economic driving style and harmonised CO2-related taxation. This requires a partnership involving the automotive industry, the fuel industry, policy makers at all EU government levels and consumers. A vehicle-related target of 130 grammes CO2 per kilometre by 2012, as proposed by the Commission, is not feasible. The car industry, often called “the engine of Europe”, needs a sound policy framework as a basis for investment decisions and long-term planning security. The Commission’s proposal is not in line with its own “better regulation” agenda, the “Lisbon” agenda and with “CARS 21”, the automotive regulatory project aimed at improving the industry’s competitive strength.

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