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Lib Dem MEPs fight for fuel efficient cars

January 27, 2010 12:20 PM

Car drivers are getting more miles to the gallon out of their vehicles, with big improvements still to come.

Lib Dem MEPs for the South East, Sharon Bowles and Catherine Bearder, have welcomed EU plans to force car manufacturers to make cars more fuel efficient. The EU's Strategy to reduce CO2 emissions from passenger cars and light-commercial vehicles hopes to achieve a 20% increase in fuel efficiency over the next six years.

Sharon Bowles, who chairs the European Parliament's Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee, said:

"I am glad to see the EU taking the reduction of CO2 emissions seriously. Before the Copenhagen Summit, I highlighted the consequences climate change, caused in part by an increase in CO2 emissions, could have on the South East."

"With this in mind, I welcome any attempt by the EU to make cars cleaner and more efficient."

Catherine Bearder said:

"Driving is an important part of our lives in South East England. The environment around us is changing quickly, so we must be willing to adapt to guarantee the future of the car. The car industry has made some great improvements and I'm very pleased to hear there is even more to come."

"Fuel efficiency doesn't just reduce the cost to the environment, but also the cost to people's wallets. With record oil prices over the last few years, greater fuel efficiency will give people a bit more money in their pockets."

Latest figures for the 12 million cars sold in Europe in 2008 reveal that average emissions were down by 3.3%, the largest fall since records began to be kept a decade ago. Average emissions from new cars sold in the UK during 2008 stood at 158.2 gCO2/km compared to a European average of 153.5 gCO2/km.

Across Europe currently 47.3% of cars sold are fuelled by petrol, 51.4% by diesel, while 1.3% use alternative power sources.

ENDS