EU court rejects 'excessively high' diesel emissions limits

December 13, 2018
An EU court said the Commission's emissions limits were 'too high'

An EU court on Thursday rejected the "excessively high" diesel emissions limits Brussels set just after the scandal in which German carmaker Volkswagen cheated on emissions tests.

The General Court "annuls in part the (European) Commission's regulation setting excessively high oxides of nitrogen emission limits for the tests for new light passenger and commercial vehicles," it said.

The Commission, the EU's executive arm, aimed to set new norms to what existed already for emissions tests conducted in the laboratory but which lawmakers said accounted for differences in real driving conditions.

By chance, the new limits were set weeks after the "Dieselgate" scandal erupted three years ago.

Emissions laws have been a key target for since the scandal erupted in 2015, when Volkswagen admitted to manipulating 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide to cheat regulatory .

But the General Court, based in Luxembourg, upheld the actions taken by the cities of Paris, Brussels and Madrid to annul the limits set by the Commission.

"They submit that the Commission was not entitled to adopt the oxides of nitrogen emission values selected because they are less demanding than the limits set by the applicable Euro 6 standard," the court said.

The Euro 6 standard was set in 2007 by the European Parliament and the EU member countries concerning emissions from light passenger and .

The court ruled "the Commission did not have the power to amend the Euro 6 emission limits for the new real driving tests."

The went further.

"Even if it had to be accepted that technical constraints may justify a certain adjustment, a difference such as that stemming from the contested regulation means that it is impossible to know whether the Euro 6 standard is complied with during those tests."

Explore further: Safeguarding compliance with new vehicle emissions legislation

Related Stories

Safeguarding compliance with new vehicle emissions legislation

August 7, 2018

The emissions performance of vehicles is improving, but continuous monitoring is needed to follow the implementation of the new vehicle emissions legislation and compliance with it, according to a new Science for Policy report ...

Volkswagen to devote 3 German plants to electric car push

November 14, 2018

German automaker Volkswagen will convert three factories in Germany to manufacture electric cars, ramping up production of zero-local emission cars ahead of tougher European emissions standards, the company said Wednesday.

Germany opens Opel probe in 'dieselgate' scandal

July 15, 2018

German authorities are investigating carmaker Opel as part of an inquiry into the "dieselgate" scandal that saw major manufacturers such as Volkswagen fined billions of euros for cheating emissions tests, the transport ministry ...

Recommended for you

Technology near for real-time TV political fact checks

January 18, 2019

A Duke University team expects to have a product available for election year that will allow television networks to offer real-time fact checks onscreen when a politician makes a questionable claim during a speech or debate.

Privacy becomes a selling point at tech show

January 7, 2019

Apple is not among the exhibitors at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show, but that didn't prevent the iPhone maker from sending a message to attendees on a large billboard.

China's Huawei unveils chip for global big data market

January 7, 2019

Huawei Technologies Ltd. showed off a new processor chip for data centers and cloud computing Monday, expanding into new and growing markets despite Western warnings the company might be a security risk.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.