Low-carbon mobility is the future, says the EU Commission, but ACEA argues that co-ordinated policy is vital.
Published yesterday by the European Commission, the Communication on Clean and Energy Efficient Vehicles has put forward the essential conditions for a viable transition to sustainable mobility in the EU.
The strategy has three main aims:
– Firstly, it sets out medium- to long-term objectives to promote a new industrial approach, based on clean and energy-efficient vehicles that will boost the competitiveness of the European industry and will provide new jobs and support restructuring.
– Secondly, the strategy should help European industry in taking globally a leading role in the deployment of alternative propulsion technologies that will serve as building blocks for the future worldwide mobility system.
– Third, the strategy will promote the creation of a green economy based on sustainability and will support the decarbonisation of transport.
Speaking at the launch of the Communication, Commission vice-president Antonio Tajani, who is in charge of industry and entrepreneurship, said: “In 2010, the automotive industry enters into a defining phase for its future success. The new European strategy will provide a supportive framework based on a twin-track approach: improving the efficiency of conventional engines and making ultra low-carbon mobility a reality for European consumers.
“The strategy also aims at achieving common standards for electrical cars so that they can be charged everywhere in the EU,” he added.
The push on enabling electric mobility in the EU
Actions announced in the Communication focus on enabling electromobility such as:
– Ensuring that alternative propulsion vehicles are at least as safe as conventional ones.
– Promoting common standards that will allow all electric vehicles to be charged anywhere in the EU.
– Encouraging installation of publicly accessible charging points.
– Promoting the development of smart electricity grids.
– Updating the rules and promote research on recycling of batteries.
For the full list of actions, see MEMO/10/153
View of ACEA
Commenting on the publication of the Communication, Ivan Hodac, secretary-general of the ACEA(European Automobile Manufacturers Association) said it supported the Commission in its aim to facilitate a swift deployment of clean and energy efficient vehicles.
But, according to Hodac, the publication of the Communication also highlights the complexity of the tasks ahead.
“Some actions can be started immediately such as agreeing on a European plug to recharge a vehicle. Other measures need still further, careful consideration. For example, commercial transportation is very different from individual mobility, and policies must be shaped accordingly."
By Carmel Doyle
Photo: Antonio Tajani, vice-president of the EC, pictured visiting the Volkswagen construction site in Wolfsburg
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