Positive Environment News

Vans, Light Trucks Face Speed Limiters In EU: Draft

Date: 05-May-10
Country: BELGIUM
Author: Pete Harrison

Vans and light trucks should be fitted with mandatory speed limiters in the European Union to prevent them exceeding 120 km per hour and improve their fuel efficiency, according to an EU report.

The recommendation comes in a paper setting out the European Parliament's preliminary stance on cutting carbon emissions from vans. Parliament and the EU's 27 member countries will hammer out a final deal in coming weeks.

"One ... way to tackle the problem would be to have mandatory speed limiters for light commercial vehicles," says the document, seen by Reuters.

"These vehicles are almost exclusively used for commercial purposes and do not need to exceed 120 km per hour," it adds.

"The technology is available to do this, it is a cheap and effective way of immediately lowering emissions and many commercial organizations retro-fit them to their vehicles."

The European Commission has proposed cutting van emissions to 175 grams of carbon dioxide per km by 2016, about 14 percent below the 2007 benchmark of 203 grams.

By 2020, manufacturers would have to cut by about a third to 135 grams per km, but the parliament report recommends easing that target to 150 grams.

The Commission proposed that manufacturers that fail to meet the standards should face penalties of 120 euros per gram of CO2 per car, but the parliament's report proposes easing that to 95 grams -- the same level already set for cars.

"The Commission proposal does not contain any justifications for higher penalties," it says.

(Editing by David Brunnstrom)

© Thomson Reuters 2010 All rights reserved

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