The proposal to block petrol and diesel cars in 2035 in Europe

The proposal to block petrol and diesel cars in 2035 in Europe

Stop to endothermic engines of cars and heavy vehicles in Europe in 2035: the Environment Commission of the European Parliament voted on Wednesday 11 May to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles within thirteen years. Two intermediate steps are foreseen in the text, which arrived in Strasbourg at the instigation of the Commission: MEPs are asking car manufacturers to reduce the average emissions of the car fleet by 20% by 2025 and by 55% by 2030. For vans, the targets emissions are slightly lower and predict average emissions reductions of new vehicles of 15% by 2025 and 50% by 2030. Today cars are responsible for 13% of greenhouse gas emissions in the Union and vans by 2% . Is it a first step? Certainly. But caution is circulating in Brussels circles. Let's see why.

How to mitigate the effects of the climate crisis The panel of scientists of the United Nations suggests accelerating on technologies and digital to prevent the worst consequences of the climate crisis The steps that will follow “Everything is still possible in the steps that will follow - Veronica Aneris, director of Transports & Enviroment Italia, an environmental organization that is monitoring the process, tells The vote on Wednesday is not conclusive: the text will now have to pass the scrutiny of the plenary assembly, scheduled for 7 or 8 June. Then the European Council will vote, before entering the so-called trilogue, the actual negotiation phase which could last until the end of the year ”.

Who row against? “The European Commission is absolutely in favor - says Aneris - but anything can happen in the Strasbourg plenary, in the Council and in the negotiations. Sectors of the right and also of the European People's Party are opposed ”. Of course, it can also be improved. "And increase ambition - comments Aneris -. For this reason, to protect ourselves from surprises, we would have expected even greater audacity from the Environment Commission ".

According to the activist, the problem lies in the intermediate stages: "We had proposed to put one in 2027 because, on the basis of the announcements of the manufacturers and the dynamics of the sector, which are systemic, it was clear that the target of 2030 would have made it possible to reach the objectives already in 2028. Failing to include an intermediate stage will thus lead to a relaxation of producers and an 'S' trend: they push as long as they can, and then slow down. More linear progress would be better. Also taking advantage of the international situation, and of rising oil prices, to increase ambition ".

The atlas of the risks we run as a result of the climate crisis, if we don't hurry to change The latest UN report paints a picture of the risks and consequences the world will have to face if we fail to curb global warming and adapt our society The proposal: mapping the conversion by 2024 The Environment Commission also approved an amendment on the so-called “just transition”, the sustainable transition for workers in the sector. Fundamental so that environmentalism does not remain a niche game. The amendment requires the Commission to map the skills necessary for the transition by the end of 2023, and allocate funds to support policies to mitigate its impact.

"For us to accelerate the start-up of economies of scale on the electrical transition is important. Are jobs lost? We would say the opposite. On 25 March at the Turin Chamber of Labor, a place full of symbolic meanings in the Italian capital of the car, a pact for sustainable mobility was signed between the ministry, CGIL, Motus E (an association that gathers manufacturers, ed) and associations environmentalists including ours, Legambiente, WWF - says the activist -. The agreement will create a permanent table on the subject. Because workers are also in favor of the mobility transition, and for a simple reason: internal combustion engines are inexorably losing market share. Diesel was 55% in Italy in 2017, today we are at 19%. And this does not escape the workers, who ask for answers ”.

The key point is the conversion of the entire automotive sector. And they are games that are played over a period of several years. “We must teach the workers who produce pistons to make solar panels, to work in the gigafactories that produce batteries - comments Aneris -. Looking back at history, there is no shortage of examples: in the coal mining region of Limburg, Belgium, in the 1960s it was done with miners who learned to produce cylinders. But we are behind on a global and European level. And we are also in Italy. Phase out is the only way to enable states to accelerate ".

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