CO2 Emissions from New Cars Rise in Europe

The average output of carbon dioxide from new cars sold in the European Union rose to 118.5 grams per kilometer in 2017, according to new data from the European Environmental Agency.

The increase was the industry’s first since EEA began tracking the numbers in 2010. The agency blames a decline in demand for diesels, whose CO2 emissions are roughly one-third lower than those of comparable gasoline-fueled vehicles.

In 2017, gasoline vehicles surpassed diesels for the first time in decades, capturing nearly 57% of the EU’s car market. ACEA says the trend likely continued last year.

Current regulations cap allowable CO2 fleet averages at 120 g/km. ACEA notes that carmakers are rushing dozens of electric and hybrid models to market to meet 2021’s limit of 95 g/km and even more stringent targets in 2025 and 2030.

The trade group, acknowledging the higher cost of EVs, says the lack of a sufficient charging network in the EU could thwart the industry’s sales efforts.

There currently are 150,000 charging points available to the public in the EU. That number must expand 20-fold to at least 2.8 million by 2030 to support the volume of EV sales carmakers need to meet the future CO2 limits, ACEA warns.