Currently, the average emissions of vehicles in Europe are 162 grams per kilometer driven (OK, this is the number from 2005, but that's as current as anyone has figures for). A European Commission proposal released today wants to force automakers to use technology to cut those emissions from new cars sold in the EU to 130 by 2012. A further 10 grams per kilometer would be reduced through biofuels.
EU Industry Commissioner Guenter Verheugen said that he knows the technology additions will be expensive, but there are broader benefits.

"We have to be clear about this, this is something which would considerably increase manufacturing costs per car," he told the AP, adding that the extra costs "will be more than balanced by the fact that cars will have greater fuel efficiency."

Not everyone is happy with this plan, naturally. One opposition group, the UK's Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Limited (SMMT), says that these plans "cast a cloud on the horizon." Specifically, that the emission reductions/higher prices will certainly not help sell cars. SMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan released a statement saying, "We have also already produced and brought to market cars that can meet the 120g/km limit – the problem is that motorists do not buy them!"

[Source: BBC, AP, SMMT]


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