Old cars are a major contributor to overall CO2 emissions in the UK, with larger cities in particular now facing the problem of contamination produced by older combustion engines. Air pollutants from these types of vehicles include nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons, which have a damaging impact on the health of people, animals and vegetation locally. It’s for this reason that the EU has stipulated that all new cars should contribute to decreasing CO2 emissions in the atmosphere. This law went into effect in 1993 and gave rise to the original Euro 1 emissions standard.
Euro 5, the European regulation which currently controls CO2 emissions from cars, has now established a new limit. This program is calling for an 80% reduction in damaging particles expelled into the air by combustion engines. More specifically, the amount of carbon monoxide that is emitted into the atmosphere cannot exceed 500 mg/km for diesel engines, or 1000 mg/km for petrol engines.
This law came into effect in 2009 and all member states of the EU will be obliged to reject the registration, standardisation and sale of all cars that do not respect these emission limits. Additionally, an increased number of local authorities are now becoming aware of the importance of this problem and are slowly preventing the highest polluting old cars from driving into city centres.
An elevated percentage of CO2 produced in urban centres comes from older cars already on the roads; some studies have estimated that if all used cars were eliminated, those emissions would be reduced by at least half. It is for this reason that practically all EU member states offer incentives to help people exchange their cars for models that consume and pollute far less.
However, with the economic crisis, some people prefer to buy used cars that do not comply with the latest European legislation, since they are more cost effective to purchase. But to counter this, some governments are thinking seriously about establishing penalties in the form of taxes for cars that exceed the permitted CO2 and NO2 levels. Therefore, buying a new car is a much smarter investment, since it will not only allow us to care for the environment, help avoid any future financial headaches.
Jesse Wallace writes for a digital marketing agency. This article has been commissioned by a client of said agency. This article is not designed to promote, but should be considered professional content.