Expand Ad


Average CO2 emissions from new cars in the European Union decreased by 3.7 per cent in 2010.

The improvement brings average emissions down to 140g/km and puts the EU on track to reach its target of cutting average tailpipe emissions to 130g/km CO2 by 2015.

EU climate commissioner, Connie Hedegaard, told Reuters she expected the region’s new vehicle fleet in 2015 to go beyond the targets set in 2008.

“These data show again that setting targets … stimulates the car industry to put greener cars on the market,” Ms Hedegaard said.

“These innovations also ensure Europe’s car industry remains competitive in the changing global market.”

Carbon dioxide emissions decreased less in 2010 than they did in 2009 however (3.7 per cent vs 5.1 per cent), and this is linked in part to the average weight of vehicles, which increased 28kg last year alone.

Arne Richters, programme manager for clean cars for environmental campaigner Transport & Environment, said the EU needed to focus on encouraging people to purchase smaller cars and, more importantly, discourage people from jumping up to SUVs.

“That is no surprise as EU rules favour heavier cars by allowing them to emit more CO2. That needs to change,” Mr Richters said.

“The EU should be favouring more efficient saloons, estates and hatchbacks rather than encouraging gas guzzling, tall and heavy SUVs. Promoting heavier cars is holding back CO2 reductions.”

In the EU, 29 per cent of new vehicles emit less than 120g/km CO2. In contrast, according to the Federal Government’s Green Vehicle Guide, there are just 20 different car models in Australia that beat this level, and of those only the Volkswagen Golf consistently rates inside the top 20 from a monthly sales perspective.

Denmark and Portugal are the countries with the lowest average CO2 emissions, while Bulgaria, Denmark, Greece, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands and Sweden all reduced their emissions by around eight per cent in 2010.

Let us know your thoughts on the issue. Is CO2 a consideration when you are looking at new cars, or are you not bothered by it? And would you be more likely to purchase a lower-emitting vehicle if there was a larger range available in Australia?




  • Richard

    C02 emissions is equivalent to fuel consumption.

    So, if you think fuel consumption is important then C02 emissions will be lower.

    The only issue is diesel. It contains more carbon per litre than petrol. So a diesel car has to have a lower l/100km figure to match the same C02 output of a petrol car.

  • Realist

    The Chilean and Iceland volcanoes over recent times emiited so much CO2 into the atmosphere that we could all drive Hummers for the rest of our lives and not have to wear hairshirts or thrash ourselves with birch saplings every Gaia Day as The Greens would have us.

    The bottom line is that solar activity, volcanoes, even emissions from algae and insects make man’s contributions pale into insignificance – and that’s even if you believe the fairy tale being peddled by carpetbaggers that CO2 causes global warming as opposed to following it.

    • So you mean that it OK for us humans can keep on burning oil because a volcano produces more pollutants?

      Hey everyone! Realist says it’s OK to keep polluting the world because he/she says the solar activities, volcanoes and emissions from algae and insects makes our contribution insignificant! Hooray!!!!!! I’m going to celebrate by doing some burnouts and cutting down some old forest trees!

    • Tom

      Except that the Icelandic volcano emitted a negligible amount of CO2 into the atmosphere – “Experts stressed that the volcano contributed just a tiny amount — less than a third of one percentage point — of global emissions of greenhouse gases.”

      Furthermore: “Iceland’s Eyjafjoell volcano is emitting between 150,000 and 300,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per day, a figure placing it in the same emissions league as a small-to-medium European economy, experts said on Monday.”

      To put this into perspective: “According to the European Environment Agency (EAA), daily emissions from the aviation sector in the 27 nations of the European Union are around 440,000 tons per day.”

      Although the article said that not all European planes were grounded during the eruption, it would mean that the CO2 emitted by the volcano would be near enough to being offset by the widespread grounding of aircraft throughout Europe.

      (source: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/world/view/20100420-265338/Iceland-volcano-emitting-150-300000-tons-of-CO2-dailyexperts)

  • CarFanatic

    And yet again the Golf gets deserved recognition.

    Suck that up you Hater Princesses.

    • Alan

      What a load of rubbish. “In the EU, 29 per cent of new vehicles emit less than 120g/km CO2. In contrast, according to the Federal Government’s Green Vehicle Guide, there are just 20 different car models in Australia that beat this level, and of those only the Volkswagen Golf consistently rates inside the top 20 from a monthly sales perspective. There is only ONE model within the Golf range (of 20 odd versions) which emits less than 120g/km, that’s the BlueMotion at 99g/km. Which is impressive until you realize it is diesel, manual only and slow as. The rest of the golf range emits bteween 133 and 201g/km, which is only par for the course (pun intended) for a vehicle of that size. e.g. Corolla is 171 to 181g/km.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1715760895 Charles Dean

    I would twang to live in Europe, it’s too communist.. Regulation here and there.. No thank you..

    • F1MotoGP

      You do not know what is communism!! Regulation is everywhere. Better start looking here. Food, cars, banking, phone, gas, electricity…etc it is a long list. Without regulation capitalist will take all your money because that is what they want.

  • GTI

    Why aren’t greenpeaceofcrap targeting suv owners? Maybe vw are an easy target for those fruitloops. Greenies should be pushing for higher tax rates and rego for big, heavy suv’s and 4wds in urban areas, not simply cutting at vw’s tall poppy.

  • Octavian

    My next purchase will probably be a Golf BlueMotion, so yeh, carbon emissions are top on my purchasing considerations.