Fuel Quality Directive: we're still waiting for vital carbon cuts
24 February 2012
A crucial decision that would curb high-carbon fuels in Europe was postponed yesterday. Despite intense lobbying, the vote on the EU Fuel Quality Directive did not achieve the necessary majority, and the decision has been postponed until June when ministers from Europe’s member states will vote.
If passed, the Fuel Quality Directive (FQD) would have officially recognised fuels with the highest carbon footprint - like tar sands - as more polluting than fuels like conventional oil. The FQD aims to set a higher ‘carbon value’ for the most polluting fuels, which would effectively penalise them and reduce future use in the EU. This would encourage the use of lower carbon fuels, and would make our transport system less carbon-polluting.
The Directive aims to cut 6% carbon emissions from EU transport by 2020. The proposal supported by Connie Hedegaard, the climate action commissioner, had been fiercely lobbied against by Canada and oil companies who do not want the fuel derived from tar sands to be labelled as high carbon.
Over the past two years WWF have been part of a coalition across Europe campaigning for a robust Fuel Quality Directive as part of our Toxic Fuels campaign.
This week's decision was a partial victory, but the coalition of NGOs will be pushing hard over the next few months to ensure we get the Fuel Quality Directive our planet urgently needs.
Find out more about our Toxic Fuels campaign
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