On October 27, the European Parliament reached a provisional agreement with EU negotiators on the European Commission’s deal for carmakers to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from internal combustion engine (ICE) cars by 100% from 2021 levels by 2035. The agreement would ban the sale of new diesel and gasoline cars in the EU from 2035 onward. The deal aims to help speed up the transition to electric cars and reduce CO2 emissions. Included in the ban are hybrid cars powered by both gasoline and electricity.  

What Is the EU ICE Ban?

The deal includes a 55% reduction in CO2 emissions from new cars sold by 2030 from 2021 levels, which represents an increase from the existing target of 37.5% by 2030, according to Reuters. Van manufacturers must comply with a 100% CO2 reduction by 2035, and a 50% reduction by 2030, compared to 2021 levels.  

Smaller carmakers that manufacture 10,000 new cars per year or 22,000 new vans could be granted an exemption until the end of 2035, according to CNBC. Carmakers manufacturing fewer than 1,000 cars per year will be exempt from the rule. Additionally, the EU is drafting a proposal on how CO2-neutral cars could be sold in the EU after 2035.  

“With these targets, we create clarity for the car industry and stimulate innovation and investments for car manufacturers. In addition, purchasing and driving zero-emission cars will become cheaper for consumers. I am pleased that today we reached an agreement with the Council on an ambitious revision of the targets for 2030 and supported a 100% target for 2035. This is crucial to reach climate neutrality by 2050 and make clean driving more affordable,” said Jan Huitema, the European Parliament’s main negotiator, in a statement. 

The European Parliament announced that the European Commission would publish a report by the end of 2025 and every two years after that covering the progress being made toward achieving zero-emission road mobility. The report will also cover the impact of the deal on consumers, employment and the affordability of zero- and low-emission cars.  

What’s Next?

The European Council and European Parliament must formally approve the deal before it can take effect, according to CNBC. The deal will be the first to be finalized from the EU’s “Fit for 55” package of policies, according to Bloomberg. 

The other deals currently in the works include changes to the EU’s carbon market, as well as plans to increase renewable energy and energy efficiency, according to Bloomberg. The three deals are part of the EU’s goal to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 55% within the decade and reach net zero by 2050. According to Reuters, the EU is seeking to make agreements on these remaining two deals ahead of the U.N.’s COP27 conference taking place Nov. 6-18.  

Beyond the EU, the U.S. and U.K. have implemented similar policies to phase out the sale of new ICE cars. The U.K. announced it would ban the sale of new ICE cars by 2030 but included an exception for ICE cars powered by synthetic fuels. This past August, California announced it would phase out the sale of new gasoline-powered cars by 2035. Fifteen other U.S. states have signed on to California’s zero-emission car program, according to Bloomberg.  

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