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Europe sets targets to boost alternative fuels

27 November, 2013

EU member states would have to ensure that specified numbers of electric vehicle recharging points and hydrogen and natural gas stations are built by 2020, under a draft directive endorsed by the European Parliament’s Transport and Tourism Committee on November 26.

The draft rules aim to reduce dependence on oil and boost take-up of alternative fuels, so as to help achieve a 60% cut in greenhouse gas emissions from transport by 2050.

The draft rules would require member states to set targets for building publicly-available networks of electric vehicle recharging points and refuelling stations for other alternative fuels, such as hydrogen, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) by 2020.

MEPs said private sector players should play a leading role in developing this infrastructure, but member states should provide tax and public procurement incentives for them to do so.

The draft specified a minimum number of publically available recharging points for electric vehicles would have to be put into place by member states, especially in towns, with a UK target of 70,000.

In countries where hydrogen refuelling points already exist, refuelling points would be required at intervals not exceeding 300 km. MEPs added a requirement for building up numbers of hydrogen refuelling points in member states where they do not yet exist, with a deadline of 31 December 2030.

For heavy duty vehicles, refuelling points for LNG along the roads on the core network would be required at intervals not exceeding 400 km, and CNG refuelling points should be available at maximum intervals of 100 km.

When setting targets, member states should pay particular attention to proving sufficient number of re-charging points and refuelling points in urban areas, say MEPs.

Nationally-coordinated policy plans would have to include targets and measures to boost the take-up of alternative fuels, said the Transport Committee.





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