Opel and company CEO Dr. Karl Thomas-Neumann are questioning the benefits of current and future CO2 regulations in Europe. During a workshop in Brussels hosted by Opel and the Hessian Ministry for Federal and European Affairs, the longtime auto exec called for CO2 regulations beyond 2020 to be scrutinized, as they do not correctly address problems such as emissions and climate change.
During the workshop, Neumann proposed a new CO2 regulations model which is based on sensible fleet consumption limits and other factors such as integration into the European emissions trading scheme. His remarks followed findings from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that indicated the current regulations, which only address CO2 emissions of new vehicles, are “neither very effective in regards to the climate effect nor under macroeconomic aspects.”
Representatives from the European Centre of Economic Research, along with Professor Andreas Löschel from Münster University, agreed with Neumann and showed possible alternatives to the current regulations in place, including the proposed emissions trading plan.
“The emissions trading scheme looks an especially viable possibility. This trade scheme has already been applied to power plants and energy intensive industries – why not use it in the transport and traffic sector,” explained Löschel.
The current CO2 regulations in place for passenger cars and light commercial vehicles concentrate only on the average consumption of an automaker’s entire model lineup. Targets of 130 grams per kilometer for this year and 95 grams per kilometer for 2021 have been put in place. Neumann and scientists argue this regulation only takes new car fleets into consideration, ignoring where the majority of emissions are coming from. He also said the automotive industry has been treated a lot harsher than other industries in regards to CO2 regulations.
“We need a fair playing field for CO2regulation. The time has come to work on the framework conditions,” Neumann said.