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Why the International Energy Agency is attacking SUVs

Kia EV9 electric SUV © Kia

Fatih Birol, the boss of the International Energy Agency (IEA) does not mince his words against SUVs in an interview with Les Echos. The latter underlines in fact that these vehicles represent more than 50% of sales in Europe even though they represent the 5th global source of carbon emissions – i.e. 1 billion tonnes of CO2 released into the atmosphere each year.

A success which, according to the IEA, goes against the tide of the rise of electric cars, particularly in the compact city car format – and that according to him it is therefore called upon to be supervised to stem this trend. According to the manager, we should quickly legislate more aggressively on the weight of vehicles on sale in all signatory countries – while vehicles in the category in North America weigh, for example, between 1.5 and 2.17 tonnes.

Why SUVs don't have the coast in the eyes of the IEA

In addition to the additional pollution linked to their manufacture, SUVs spend more fuel or electricity due to their weight, which puts a strain on the energy infrastructure and ultimately results in more ;greenhouse gas emissions. But this is not the only grievance against them. In fact, these vehicles are often purchased by city dwellers who could easily carry out similar uses with more compact vehicles.

In addition to being heavy, these are wider vehicles, often unsuitable for certain streets in many cities. This is why “it is vital to resolve the problems they raise in terms of additional demand for energy, occupied public space and of additional danger that they represent for pedestrians”, estimates the IEA.

Among its recommendations, Fatih Birol offers, among other things, a “different tax regime” and “higher parking rates”. We note that in France measures of this type already exist at the national level – notably through the weight penalty which now applies to all vehicles over 1.6 tonnes. However, according to the organization, it would be necessary to go further.

Enough to give arguments to the Paris town hall which is organizing a local referendum on Sunday February 4, 2024 to differentiate and increase parking rates for these vehicles in the capital.

  • In an interview given to Les Echos , Fatih Birol (director of the IEA) believes that we need to legislate more aggressively on SUVs.
  • Enough to discourage their purchase while the category represents more than 50% of sales in Europe.
  • Heavier, these vehicles also release 20% of carbon emissions. additional CO2 in their life cycle – they are also significantly more cumbersome in the city.
  • Enough to give arguments to the Paris town hall which is launching a referendum on Sunday February 4, 2024 to implement parking rates higher in the capital for SUVs.

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Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116