European parliament scales back CO2 emissions limits
It looks like European automakers are winning their battle against the proposed European Union limits on automotive CO2 emissions. While the European Commission had proposed a limit of 120 g/km for the vehicle fleet by 2012, manufacturers where claiming the limit was too aggressive. The members of parliament apparently agreed, with the Industry and Energy Committee voting 35-21 to slow things down. Instead of having the entire fleet meet the requirement, only 60 percent of vehicles will have to pass the new threshold in 2012. Over the next several years, through 2015, the rest of the vehicles will meet the standard as well. Extremely low emission vehicles with less than 50 g/km of CO2 will also be given extra credit counting as 1.5 vehicles in the sales weighted averaging. All electric vehicles will count as three cars until 2015. In a further move sure to make environmentalists apoplectic, the fines for exceeding the limits were slashed from the EC's proposed €95 per gram of CO2 over the limit to €40 per gram.