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Parliament backs new rules to reduce air pollution from trucks and buses

The European Parliament has embraced a bold initiative to combat air pollution by endorsing new regulations targeting heavy-duty vehicles. With 445 votes in favor, 152 against, and 30 abstentions, MEPs have set the stage for negotiations with EU countries on stringent CO2 emission reduction targets for buses, trucks, and trailers.

This legislative move aligns with the ambitious goals of the Green Deal and REPowerEU, aiming to enhance air quality across the European Union. Notably, heavy-duty vehicles contribute a staggering 25% to greenhouse gas emissions from EU road transport, underlining the urgency of action.

The MEPs' proposal entails robust CO2 reduction targets for medium and heavy trucks, including specialized vehicles like garbage trucks and concrete mixers. The targets, slated for 2030-2034 (45%), 2035-2039 (65%), and 2040 onwards (90%), reflect a commitment to a sustainable and emission-free future.

Crucially, the Parliament supports the Commission's proposal to exclusively register zero-emission new urban buses starting from 2030. In a thoughtful concession, MEPs suggest a temporary exemption until 2035 for urban buses fueled by biomethane, subject to stringent conditions.

The Parliament's response aligns with citizens' expectations to address pollution and promote eco-friendly alternatives. This resonates with the sentiments expressed at the Conference on the Future of Europe, where citizens called for measures to combat pollution and encourage the adoption of electric vehicles.

By adopting this report, the Parliament is ready to finalize the legislation's shape with the help of the EU governments. This move follows the Commission's proposal in February 2023, setting CO2 standards for heavy-duty vehicles from 2030 onward, in line with the EU's climate neutrality objective for 2050 and a reduced dependency on imported fossil fuels.

As Europe takes a significant step towards a cleaner future, the Parliament's decision reflects a commitment to environmental sustainability and a clear roadmap for the automotive industry's green transformation.

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