Stockholm (NordSIP) – As part of the European Commission’s wider ‘Fit for 55’ package to tackle global warming, last year, the EU announced a plan to ban the sale of new CO2-emitting vehicles by 2035. On 27 October, the European Parliament and European Council reached a deal which effectively means that no new vans or cars with combustion engines are to be sold in the Union from 2035. The legislation will still need to be formally adopted by the member states and the European Parliament, but it is unlikely that there will be any significant changes.
“We have just finished the negotiations on CO2 levels for cars,” tweeted French MEP Pascal Canfin, who heads the European parliament’s environment commission. His enthusiasm over the deal is justified given that this is the first agreed proposal from the ‘Fit for 55’ package. The argument behind the new rules is that allowing new vehicles that emit carbon to be sold after 2035 would undermine the bloc’s overall climate ambitions. “Making it possible to sell nonzero emission cars after 2035 would have been seen as a de facto renunciation of climate neutrality in transport,” says Canfin.
According to the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA), about one in five new cars sold in the EU last year had a plug allowing them to be charged. The group expects that figure to rise to three in five by 2030. “Make no mistake, the European automobile industry is up to the challenge of providing these zero-emission cars and vans,” states Oliver Zipse, ACEA President and CEO of BMW. “However, we are now keen to see the framework conditions which are essential to meet this target reflected in EU policies. These include an abundance of renewable energy, a seamless private and public charging infrastructure network, and access to raw materials,” he adds.
As of now, there are no plans for a future driving ban on all combustion-engine vehicles. The expectation is that all of those will eventually be replaced with electric cars and vans.