Staveley Head

Staveley Head

November 06, 2009 01:00 ET

European Commission Law Sets Unrealistic Co2 Emission Target for Vans

FLINT, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Nov. 6, 2009) - One of the country's leading van insurance providers, Staveley Head, has openly supported the opinion of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) that the tough new law from the European Commission setting a target for van emissions at 175g CO2/km or 42.8 mpg by 2014 is too much too soon. The SMMT states that the industry is committed to a programme reducing CO2 emissions, but feels that the European policy-makers should make the legal framework more supportive and realistic to facilitate a low carbon economy.

The light commercial vehicle industry and manufacturers feel that the time-scale is far too short to allow the development, production and filtering of financially affordable products into the market. Traditionally, vans and light commercial vehicles have required a seven year product development cycle from the concept stage to availability in the market place.

"Vans are an integral part of the European economy and at a time of economic downturn and belt-tightening businesses do not have the capacity to invest in new products." said Paul Everitt SMMT Chief Executive. "Industry needs sufficient lead times and reasonable targets to provide affordable products. These must be fit for purpose as business tools. In the current economic climate, the EU regulation must maintain the sector's diversity while encouraging innovation and the move to low carbon models."

Staveley Head's van insurance underwriter said "We are in the grip of the worst recession this country has seen for over seventy years, and businesses need all the help they can get. We are led to believe that for the first six months of 2009 van sales are down over forty percent compared with the same period last year. This rushed and unreasonable law imposed by the European Commission can only serve to further deflate the demand for commercial vehicles due to the increased short term development and production costs which must be carried through to forecourt prices. It's commendable that the EU is seeking to reduce carbon emissions, but in the present economic crisis there are other equally important considerations that must be taken into account."

It is hoped that industry will now work with the European Parliament to develop the proposal into a workable legal format that will benefit both the environment and the economy.

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