EU reaches deal on 2020 carbon dioxide emissions law

EU reaches deal on 2020 carbon dioxide emissions law

BRUSSELS - Reuters
EU reaches deal on 2020 carbon dioxide emissions law

The EU has agreed on an emissions law despite Germany’s obstacles. AFP Photo

The European Union late on June 24 agreed a compromise deal to enforce stricter rules on carbon dioxide emissions for all new EU automobiles from 2020.

The outline agreement on implementing a target of 95 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometre (g/km) still needs the official endorsement of EU member states.

German efforts to ensure that its luxury car makers, such as BMW and Daimler, can continue to produce more polluting, less fuel efficient cars complicated the final stages of talks.

But Ireland, holder of the rotating EU presidency, which has brokered the deal, said the compromise struck the right balance between environmental ambition and economic considerations.

“This agreement clearly represents a win-win for climate, consumers, innovation and jobs and provides another important step towards a competitive, low-carbon economy,” Irish Environment Minister Phil Hogan said in a statement.

Costly measure

Under the rules, each manufacturer is assigned an individual target to take account of the nature of their fleet and their past cuts.

But making less-polluting cars is costly and restricts profit margins, which is why Germany sought ways to delay meeting the stricter rules.

Member states last week rejected a German plan that would have allowed automakers to carry over credits to pollute accrued before the new rules kick in in 2020.