Dismissing the car makers' attempts to appear green as mere PR
tactics, Greenpeace unfurled a giant banner of Pinnocchio in front
of the European car show in Brussels.  "Just as Pinocchio
couldn't be a real boy till he stopped telling lies, the car makers
will never be green until they stop showing off a green image at
car shows while filling the roads with ever heavier and more
powerful gas guzzlers," said Helen Perivier, Energy Efficiency
Project Leader for Greenpeace International.
Desperate to protect their market for heavier and more powerful
last month succeeded in weakening an EU proposal to set
mandatory carbon dioxide emissions standards for their fleets sold
in Europe and push for further concessions.
"Car makers are doing their utmost to present a green image.
But behind the concept cars and niche models is a backstage effort
to block climate saving legislation and promote a vast fleet of
polluting vehicles, " said Franziska Achterberg, Transport
Campaigner for Greenpeace European Unit.
Ten years ago European carmakers promised to bring down average
emissions to 140g/km by now . But the car makers' progress to
put their cars on a carbon diet has stalled to a virtual standstill
, while their promises have proven no more than a tactic to
delay binding standards. Despite the fact that technologies exist
to address these issues, the car makers continue to evade their
responsibility to confront climate change today.
Greenpeace believes the EU proposal will fail to effectively
control carbon dioxide emissions unless lawmakers strengthen it by
including a 120g CO2/km standard as a fleet average for 2012; and a
longer-term target of 80g CO2/km by 2020; base emission standards
on a car's utility and not its weight; and sets effective penalties
to ensure car manufacturers respect the new standards.
Other contacts: Brussels : Elysabeth Loos, Greenpeace Media Officer : +32 496 161 589Vienna : Attila Cerman, Greenpeace Media Officer : +43 664 3435354International : Franziska Achterberg, Greenpeace Transport Campaigner: +32 498 362 403 International: Helen Perivier, Greenpeace Climate & Energy Campaigner: +32 496 127 107
VVPR info: John Novis, Greenpeace International Head of Photography for Images + 31 (0) 653 81 91 21 - Maarten van Rouveroy, Greenpeace International Video Producer +31 (0) 6 4619 7322
Notes:  Pinocchio wears a racing suit with logos of brands belonging to members of the European Automobile Manufacturer’s Association (ACEA): Audi, BMW, Citroen, Fiat, Ford, Land Rover, Mercedes Benz, Opel, Porsche, Peugeot, Renault, Saab Toyota, Volkswagen, Volvo.  Under a voluntary agreement, Europe's car makers committed to bring back fleet average emissions from new cars to 140g CO2/km by 2008. Japanese and Korean carmakers were to reach the same level by 2009. But by 2006, average emissions had not fallen below 160g CO2/km. European Environment Agency, “Europe’s Environment / The Fourth Assessment”, 2007, p. 314-315 http://reports.eea.europa.eu/state_of_environment_report_2007_1/en