Agency points to EU car emission testing flaws

Standard tests for CO2 and pollutants do not reflect the real world, says European environment agency

EU standard tests for carbon dioxide and other harmful emissions from new cars fail to reflect the real world, the European environment agency (EEA) has warned. The findings are part of the agency's fifth annual environmental assessment of transport in Europe, known as Term (EED 17/07/02).

Presented as ministers meet in Amsterdam to discuss greening transport, the assessment points out a series of flaws in the tests. First, various equipment that increases vehicle weight, thereby adding to emissions, is not included. Growing use of seat heaters, air conditioning and the like could be adding an extra 16 to 28 grams per kilometre (g/km) to new car CO2 emissions, the agency says.

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