The Ebusco 3.0 electric city bus

The European Commission has proposed ambitious goals to reduce emissions from heavy-duty vehicles, including all new urban buses which will be required to be zero-emission starting in 2030. These measures are intended to stimulate faster deployment of clean technologies and encourage international competitiveness.

Traffic and burning fuels are the two main drivers of pollution in European cities, where the continent’s dirtiest air can be found. This is why the EU released a new framework for safer and more sustainable urban mobility, which includes the proposed 2030 zero-emission target for new city buses.

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The Commission proposes to make all new city buses zero-emission as of 2030 to stimulate faster deployment of zero-emission buses in cities. An exemption to the CO2 reduction targets will apply to vehicles used for mining, forestry and agricultural purposes.

The Commission also proposes a mandatory 45% emissions reductions from 2030 for all new heavy-duty commercial vehicles, a 65% emission reduction from 2035, and a 90% emission reduction from 2040. These strengthened emission standards would ensure that this segment of the road transport sector contributes to the transition towards zero-emission mobility and the EU’s climate and ‘zero pollution’ objectives.

Multiple benefits

The new standards would reduce the demand for imported fossil fuels and promote energy savings and energy efficiency in the EU’s transport sector. They would also reduce fuel costs and total cost of ownership, improve air quality in cities, and benefit Europeans’ health. Additionally, it would support the EU’s clean technology industry and encourage international competitiveness.

In order to reach these goals, investments need to be directed towards zero-emission vehicles and charging infrastructure. The proposed standards are in line with the increased ambitions of the EU in terms of climate change, the ‘Fit for 55’ package, and the Paris Agreement.