• Make road transport more sustainable, not more expensive!

    10 September 2020

    The FIA European Bureau publishes its review of two studies on external costs of transport released by the European Commission in 2019.

    The research shows once more how difficult it is to properly assess external costs of transport. Pointing to the high level of uncertainty in the assumptions and approximations of both data and calculations, the FIA European Bureau calls upon the European Commission to be very careful in drawing conclusions in designing future policies.

    “External costs are based on a significant range of assumptions, which makes their estimation challenging. Our study shows a number of significant gaps in the study commissioned by the European Commission. We urge the Commission to take these high uncertainties into account when seeking to design policies allocating any additional cost to consumers” said Laurianne Krid, Director General FIA Region I.

    Reflecting on the findings of the European Commission studies, the research confirms that charging for external effects of transport is not suitable to reduce them effectively and it is highly detrimental for low-income consumers.“Motorists already pay a high price and the EC should not further increase their financial burden. Experience shows that technology, investment and command and control measures are most effective to tackle externalities in transport, in particular with regard to accidents, congestion, and noise.” added Laurianne Krid.

    On a positive note, the research points out that technological progress will strongly contribute to decrease externalities within the next ten years. “Engine and safety technology, as well as traffic management systems, will significantly contribute to reduce pollution and increase the safety of passenger cars in the next decade” concluded Laurianne Krid.

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    Notes to editors

    The objective of the scrutiny study has been to review the findings of the study “Sustainable Transport Infrastructure Charging and Internalisation of Transport Externalities (STICITE)” and the “Handbook on the external costs of transport version 2019”, both published by the European Commission in 2019.

    The expert review carried out by the Impact Assessment Institute, Element Energy, and Cambridge Econometrics scrutinises the evidence in detail, including the methodologies, assumptions, data, results and conclusions, presents additional insights and research, and considers alternative approaches. Based on this thorough review, the researchers make recommendations for further study.

    The FIA European Bureau is a consumer body representing 67 Motoring and Touring Clubs and their 36 million members from across Europe. The FIA European Bureau represents the interests of our members as motorists, riders, pedestrians and passengers. The FIA European Bureau is working to ensure safe, affordable, clean and efficient mobility for all. Learn more at www.fiaregion1.com