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New EU road rules ‘unfair and will increase emissions’ says report

[ September 21, 2021   //   ]

Europe’s road freight industry will become less efficient and more polluting if the European Commission’s Mobility Package is implemented, a finding confirmed by two independent studies commissioned by the EC itself, says analyst Ti.

They found that the new legislation insisting that drivers return to home regularly and placing quotas on international combined transport (CT) would run counter to European Green Deal objectives.

Ti argues that not only would it be bad for the environment, but, in the view of many of Europe’s members, it would also be anti-competitive. Whilst the legislation was ostensibly aimed at improving working conditions in the road and transport sector, many countries in Eastern Europe believe that it has been designed to reduce the competitiveness of their international trucking industries relative to higher cost hauliers in the West. Consequently, the law, dubbed the ‘Macron Package’ after the French President, who has been one of its main promoters, has been opposed by European Union members such as Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Cyprus, Malta and Estonia.

According to the Bulgarian government, it is discriminatory and unfair for companies on the peripheries of the EU, as their drivers would be obliged to return to their home countries every eight weeks, resulting in long and potentially environmentally damaging journeys.

Ti says that the results of the two assessments back up the points raised by the Eastern European countries, revealing the combined emissions of both provisions could result in 3.3m additional tonnes of CO2 annually, the equivalent of Estonia’s annual total transport emissions.

If no new developments interrupt the implementation, the return obligation for lorries and cabotage quotas on international CT operations will take effect from 21 February 2022, 18 months after the adoption of the package.

According to Viki Keckarovska, the report’s author: “We understand that the European Commission is undertaking an urgent review of the legislation in light of its impact upon the environment. It seems nonsensical at a time in which sustainability is at the forefront of everyone’s minds that the European Union will bring into effect legislation which will actually increase emissions, not reduce them. We would urge legislators to think again and revise a package which is not only divisive but which can have such a deleterious impact on the environment.”

The full analysis is available to download free at: www.ti-insight.com/whitepapers/ (The Impact of the Mobility Package on Road Freight Operations)

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