According to the latest edition of a report coming form the European Environment Agency (EEA), the average carbon dioxide emissions from new autos delivered in the EU slid 2.6 percent in 2014.
The study shows the drop was larger than even the threshold forecasted for this year, showing that efforts to curb climate change are finally paying off. The Copenhagen-based EEA’s report showed that average emissions reached 123.4 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometer, creeping lower than this year’s target of 130 grams, actually achieved since 2013 (when it was 126.7 grams). Among countries, the most carbon-efficient customers were in the Netherlands, Greece and Portugal, while at the other end of the spectrum stood Estonia, Latvia and Bulgaria. In a bid to limit the global phenomenon of warming, the European Union has imposed all automakers an average limit of 95 grams per km, to be achieved in 2021. “On past trends, we’d expect emissions to keep decreasing,” commented Martin Adam, chief of the EEA unit for air pollution, transport and noise.
The slide registered last year came mostly courtesy of increasingly efficient cars – the Europeans in past years could only buy smaller vehicles that were more efficient, but last year the recession has finally come to an end, with rising consumer confidence to accompany it. Putting a stop to the declines that took the European market to a two-decade low after previously peaking at 15.5 million in 2007, last year the European Union deliveries rose around 6 percent from the figures of 2013 to 12.5 million units. The shift in 2014 was, according to industry association AWEA, due to government support in certain markets, tax breaks and incentives and a consumer shift towards affordable brands such as Dacia and Skoda.