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Local networks to EU: make Euro 7 more ambitious

2 May 2022

The much-awaited Euro 7/VII regulation will be a game-changer for air quality in cities so its naturally raising high expectations. The European Commission-mandated rules will set new emission standards for the forthcoming generation of new vehicles. The announcement will mark a crucial step in advancing the European Union’s Green Deal and  Zero Pollution Action Plan.   

With emissions from motorised traffic a significant threat to public health, social equality and life quality in urban areas, the new Euro 7/VII will be a milestone in creating a toxic-free environment in cities. 

“Together with the expected phase-out of new fossil-fueled vehicles by 2035, Euro 7/VII will be essential in ensuring that vehicles produced in the coming years continue to contribute to the improvement of air quality in European cities”, says Thomas Lymes, Policy Advisor for Mobility & Air Quality at Eurocities 

The rules were initially slated to be published in 2021, but their announcement has been marred by several postponements. 

The EU has now set 20 July 2022 as the new date. However, Eurocities and Polis fear that once out, the new emissions standards won’t be ambitious and go far enough. The two networks have hence penned a letter to the European Commission expressing an array of concerns. 

Eurocities and Polis fear that the new standards will not be able to make a real difference in air quality in cities because they may allow vehicles to emit dangerous pollutants within the first 10 kilometres after ignition.

The city networks also worry that policymakers will yield concessions to the automotive industry which is fiercely opposing Euro 7/VII and has been throwing all its weight into the effort to water down the new legislation. In addition, Eurocities and Polis are concerned about the continued postponement of the new rules. 

As leading networks of European cities and regions, Polis and Eurocities represent over three hundred European local and regional authorities, and thus, millions of European citizens living in urban areas.

The two organisations ask the European Commission to ensure that specific parts of the EURO 7/VII legislation will contribute to meeting the latest WHO air quality standards.

The networks additionally propose that: 

    • Pollutants emitted within the first few minutes after the combustion engine’s ignition should be included in the future regulation 
    • Mandatory emission levels should apply to vehicles entire lifespan  
    • All emerging harmful pollutants should be considered in the exhaust emission standards. 
    • All non-exhaust type-of-emissions should be considered, including those originating from brake abrasion   

Click on this link for the full version: EURO-7_LETTER.pdf.

 

Contacts

Thomas Lymes Policy Advisor, Mobility
Daniela Berretta Eurocities Writer

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