The car industry produces more greenhouse gases than the entire EU, with its carbon footprint accounting for 9% of the world’s CO2 emissions, Greenpeace notes, based on a report issued on Tuesday.
The international NGO called for a deadline to be set for ending the sale of vehicles powered by gas or diesel.
Car manufacturers have a crucial influence on global warming, stressed Greenpeace, which analysed and ranked the 12 main actors in this sector according to their environmental impact.
The biggest polluter is the Volkswagen group, still embroiled in the “Dieselgate” scandal, followed by Renault-Nissan and Toyota, according to Greenpeace.
In Belgium, the combined carbon footprint of vehicles sold in 2018 – based on average emissions per kilometre, and the pollution caused by manufacturing, recycling and fuel production – makes up 24% of the country’s annual emissions, according to Greenpeace’s calculations.
The organisation singled out sport utility vehicles (SUVs) for special mention, dubbing them massive polluters. SUVs represented one third of all vehicles sold in Belgium last year and the number of new models of this type of vehicle has doubled in five years.
Greenpeace is calling for an end to the sale of vehicles powered by fossil fuels by 2028 at the latest. This is a necessary condition for limiting global warming to 1.5 °C, it stresses.
The environmental organisation has called on Belgium to follow the example of countries such as the Netherlands, France, India and the Scandinavian nations, which have already announced an end date for the sale of vehicles powered by gas or diesel.
The Brussels Times