Australia: Fuel efficiency standards – Labor unveils proposal, highlighting petrol savings of $1,000 a year for motorists
(The Guardian, 4 Feb 2024) Coalition-led scare campaign predicted for plan to place yearly cap on emissions for new cars sold in Australia
The Albanese government has unveiled its long-awaited plan for fuel efficiency standards for new cars while highlighting potential savings of $1,000 a year and predicting a Coalition-led scare campaign.
The proposed model, announced on Sunday, would place a yearly cap on the emissions output for new cars sold in Australia to incentivise carmakers to supply low- and zero-emissions vehicles and penalise companies that do not.
Legislation required to create the standards – which only apply to new passenger and light commercial vehicles – would be introduced to federal parliament in the first half of 2024 and take effect from January 2025, the government said.
Australia, along with Russia, remains one of the few countries in the OECD without standards. Industry analysts have routinely warned manufacturers are treating Australia as a dumping ground for heavy-polluting vehicles due to a lack of penalties.
The government’s preferred option is expected to deliver a reduction of 369m tonnes of CO2 by 2050 – equivalent to the last six years’ of emissions from light vehicles in Australia.