“We are convinced that a 35% reduction in CO2 emissions would give the automotive sector the right incentive to introduce more fuel-efficient cars and put low or even zero-emissions cars on the market, such as electric vehicles. But it is important to reach the reductions in a technologically neutral way”, said Jens Gieseke MEP, EPP Group Spokesman in the European Parliament’s Environment Committee, ahead of today’s vote on CO2 reductions for cars and vans by 2030.

For the EPP Group, these important changes of legislation are crucial in fighting climate change and fulfilling Europe’s commitments from the Paris Agreement. However, we regret that once again this issue has been reduced by the European Left into a battle of targets instead of finding balanced common ground that would promote Europe as a standard-maker for the rest of the world.

Gieseke believes that the 40% reduction target supported by the Left has serious consequences: “This would not help the environment; it would, rather, destroy jobs and growth in Europe. It is crucial to do everything to protect the environment and stay ambitious, but we need to remain realistic. I hope our colleagues from the other political groups will see this too.”

“Thinking of the fight against climate change, we need to think globally. When do we truly win? We win when others follow our example”, said Gieseke, recalling that lower CO2 emissions from vehicles would have direct advantages for consumers.

The European Commission’s original proposal is that average emissions on the new EU fleet of cars will have to be 30 per cent lower that in 2021. For the new EU fleet of vans in 2030, the reduction is also 30 per cent. For 2025, targets for cars and vans are 15 per cent lower that in 2021.

Based on the original proposal from the European Commission, around 170 million tons of CO2 would be reduced in the period from 2020 to 2030, which is equivalent to the total annual emissions of Austria and Greece together. It also says on average, consumers will save up to around €600 for a new car bought in 2025 over a vehicle’s lifetime and up to around €1500 for a new car bought in 2030. With the Left’s over-ambitious proposal, these benefits would diminish.