14 January 2022

CLECAT-ACEA-ESC Position Paper on EU ETS for road transport

The European Association for Forwarding, Transport, Logistics and Customs Services (CLECAT), the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) and the European Shippers’ Council (ESC) welcome the proposal to update the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) and to create a new ETS system that covers buildings as well as the road transport sector.

Indeed, the three associations believe that a solid carbon pricing system is one of the key building blocks of an effective policy framework to support and enable Europe’s transition to carbon neutrality.

In a joint position paper, the associations note that a prerequisite for the swift market uptake of alternatively-powered vehicles is the introduction of effective and targeted support measures for the sector. The ETS for road transport should therefore ensure that revenues from the auctioning of greenhouse gas allowances are ringfenced and re-invested in the road freight transport sector.

This would help accelerate investment in low- and zero-emission road freight transport vehicles and technologies. Without securing the funding for these much-needed investments, and clear and explicit targets for ringfence investments (for instance in charging and refuelling infrastructure, support of fleet renewal, etc), there is a risk of insufficient funding to support to switch to zero-emission trucking.

The revised EU ETS Directive should therefore require member states to return a significant part of the revenues from freight transport CO2 pricing to the transport sector in the form of investment support programmes for green vehicles and technologies. This would allow the sector to quickly embrace new technologies and accelerate its transition to climate neutrality. The three associations highlight that low- and zero-emission heavy-duty vehicles must quickly become the most viable and best option for transport operators.

Proper integration with existing policies at national level (eg in Germany) will be essential to avoid double charging of CO2 emissions, the associations underline. CLECAT, ACEA and ESC strongly encourage European and national decision makers to consider their recommendations as a matter of urgency in their ongoing discussions on the proposal.