EU proposes emission rules for last combustion engine cars


BRUSSELS — The European Union’s executive proposed pollution standards Thursday for new vehicles with internal combustion engines that are expected to remain on European roads long after the 27-nation bloc bans their sale in 2035.

The so-called Euro 7 standards, introduced by the European Commission, will apply to all cars, vans, trucks and buses sold in the EU, with the aim of reducing emissions from tailpipes, brakes and tyres.

EU officials said the guidelines are expected to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions from cars and vans by 35% compared to existing regulations on exhaust emissions for pollutants other than carbon dioxide, and by 56% from buses and trucks. The standards are separate from, but designed to complement, EU climate change rules on CO2.

Euro 7 standards also cover harmful pollutants emitted by vehicle exhaust pipes, brakes and tyres, including ultra-fine particles, hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide.

The proposal will be submitted to the European Parliament and EU member states with the aim of the guidelines coming into force in July 2025 for cars and vans.

EU and member state legislators achieved a deal last month to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans until 2035. The deal was the first agreement of the Fit for 55 bloc package, which the European Commission set up to meet the target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 55 % in this decade.

Under the agreement, carmakers will have to reduce emissions from new cars sold by 55% in 2030 compared to 2021, before reaching a 100% reduction five years later.

The EU believes that introducing new pollution standards for the latest generation of internal combustion engines is crucial, as vehicles entering the market before the 2035 deadline will remain in service for years.

“More than 20% of cars and vans and more than 50% of heavy goods vehicles on our streets are expected to emit pollutants from their tailpipes by 2050,” the European Commission said. “Furthermore, all vehicles, electric or not, must emit less air pollutants, for example from brakes and tires, which are about to become the main sources of particulate emissions from vehicles.”

The Commission said it is working on a further proposal to reduce CO2 emissions produced by trucks and buses.

According to the EU, emissions from transport are responsible for around 70,000 premature deaths each year in the bloc.

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