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EU car pollution laws have improved UK's air quality, say carmakers

September 4, 2015

EU car pollution laws have improved UK's air quality, say carmakers

John Vidal
Friday 4 September 2015 11.48 BST

Meeting strict new EU pollution standards has added £1,500 to the cost of every new vehicle, say carmakers who claim that because of European legislation to cut tailpipe pollution, Britain’s air quality is better now than it has been for centuries.

“New European emission limits, which apply to all new cars sold from this week, have the potential to all but eliminate exhaust pollutants that impact air quality,” said Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

The European motor industry has been stung by World Health Organisation statement that diesel fumes are a “major cancer risk” and by government health figures suggesting particulate air pollution is killing 29,000 people a year.

But as a result of European legislation to to reduce car pollution, since 1993, the minute, partially-burned bits of soot emitted from Britain’s 35m tailpipes have been cut by 96% in diesel vehicles, and the toxic NO2 gas has been reduced by 84%. Carbon dioxide emissions, which contribute to climate change, have dropped 82% in diesel and 63% in petrol cars.

Read more at The Guardian.

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