European Parliament wards off disaster on car emissions legislation

Press release - September 25, 2008
Brussels, Belgium — In a surprising turn of events at the European Parliament today, MEPs from the environment committee have backed legislation to reduce the impact of cars on the climate.

"It came down to the line, but MEPs chose to resist strong pressure from the car industry lobby and supported most of the Commission's proposed measures to cut emissions from cars," said Franziska Achterberg, Greenpeace EU transport campaigner. "Today's Parliament vote means that the car emissions legislation could still become the first effective EU law to limit our impact on the climate."

"MEPs held out against rapporteur Guido Sacconi's recommendation by rejecting calls to delay the proposed 2012 target and to weaken penalties for non- compliance. The environment committee also voted to go beyond the Commission proposal by introducing a second target in 2020, subject to a review."

"The ball is now in the Council's court. Greenpeace calls on EU ministers to take heed of the Parliament's position and support effective legislation to limit emissions from cars and protect the climate."

Other contacts:

Mark Breddy –
Greenpeace EU communications manager

+32 (0)496 15 62 29 (mob.), +32 (0)2 274 19 03,


Notes to the editor:
(1) The European Commission last year put forward a proposal to cut emissions from passenger vehicles to 130g CO2/km by 2012. The current EU average is 158g CO2/km. The environment committee effectively backed up that proposal in a vote today, and also approved a non-binding target of “no more than” 95g CO2/km for 2020, subject to a review in 2014. The final text will now be negotiated between the Parliament, EU environment ministers and the European Commission.