Clean and energy efficient vehicles get go-ahead
European Commission - IP/08/1570 22/10/2008
Brussels, 22 October 2008
The European Commission welcomes today’s support of the European Parliament for its proposal to promote a broad market introduction of clean and energy efficient vehicles through public procurement. This will reduce fuel consumption as well as CO2 and pollutant emissions from road vehicles. The EP vote is based on a compromise reached with the Member States, which are expected to adopt the proposal shortly.
Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani, in charge of transport, said: "This agreement marks an important step forward in the energy, climate and environment policies of the European Union. The public sector in Europe will set an example by promoting new and better vehicle technologies for a future sustainable transport system. This sends a clear signal to the market and to the citizens on the competitive value of technologies which save energy and protect the environment."
The proposed Directive will introduce, for the first time, energy consumption, CO2 and pollutant emissions as mandatory award criteria into public procurement of vehicles. It applies to public authorities and publicly owned undertakings and to undertakings running public passenger transport services. As a result, not only the price of a vehicle, but also the impact it creates during its lifetime for the environment are reflected in the purchase decision. Flexibility is provided for local authorities on the detailed implementation.
A harmonised methodology is defined for monetising lifetime costs for energy consumption, CO2 and pollutant emissions. This enables a transparent comparison of vehicle investment costs with the costs linked to the operation of vehicles. This facilitates an informed purchase decision and can avoid costs both for operators and for society.
The Directive is expected to have an impact well beyond its immediate scope. Public procurement is a key market of high visibility and can lead the decisions in business and private sectors. The Directive therefore is expected, over the long term, to result in a considerably faster and broader market introduction of clean and energy efficient vehicles and in a reduction of their costs through economies of scale. This will then contribute to improve energy efficiency, and reduce CO2 and pollutant emissions of the whole vehicle fleet in Europe.
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