Print 87 comment(s) - last by Spivonious.. on Jul 19 at 3:32 PM

Parliament debates a crushing new requirement for European automobiles.

The European Parliament is set to begin debate on a far-reaching proposal to reduce the carbon footprint of European vehicles.  The new plan is both large and far-reaching, but the most shocking part is a requirement to ban within six years all vehicles with a top speed of over 162km/h (101 mph). At a stroke, this would eliminate the manufacture and sale of every sports car in Europe, along with larger, more powerful sedans. The plan also includes a requirement that carmakers spend 20% of all advertising to warn consumers of the CO2 emissions of their products.

The plan's author is Chris Davies, a member of Parliament and spokesman for the EC's committee on the environment and public health. Mr. Davies official position is, "cars designed to go at stupid speeds have to be built to withstand the effects of a crash at those speeds. They are heavier than necessary, less fuel efficient and produce too many emissions."  This of course ignores the fact that the fastest sports cars are designed as light as possible and actually weigh much less than the average family car.

The plan is known as the Carbon Allowance Reduction System, or CARS for short... apparently in the hopes that a catchy, easy-to-remember name will help sell it.

Mr. Davies is also working on a new labeling scheme for Europe, whereby all goods and services purchased in Europe-- everything from an airline ticket to a packet of cornflakes-- will be required to be labeled with an official "carbon statement"-- the result of a complex and expensive accounting of the total emissions generated during manufacture, shipping, and use. He tosses off concerns over the cost of the project as unwarranted piffle.

Europe has long been known as home to some of the planet's fastest sports cars-- as well as its fastest public motorways.  Will one stroke of a pen change all that? Contact your local MEP to find out.

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RE: What if they said no?
By rdeegvainl on 7/11/2007 2:36:54 PM , Rating: 2
A good public transportation system would require too much to get started, and our government doesn't have that kind of money available (it is there, but been given to pet projects of someone) unless we implemented some sort of transport tax, i don't think it will happen.

RE: What if they said no?
By Spivonious on 7/11/2007 2:52:14 PM , Rating: 1
I would definitely pay an extra tax if it meant that I could go anywhere in the country in a fast, competitively-priced way. The framework is already there, but it's owned by the freight companies. We need to get it transferred over to make passenger traffic the priority.

RE: What if they said no?
By Ringold on 7/12/2007 2:29:53 PM , Rating: 2
None of that 'framework' would be very useful, I don't imagine. First, it's not the same kind of track used in all these high speed rail projects we hear about. Second, it's heavily utilized by industry -- those "freight companies" are getting fuel to powerplants, ethanol to refineries and end-users (yep, we'd need an entirely new pipeline system to really use ethanol), materials to factories and so on.

Plus, as Central Florida is about to notice, passenger rail is absolutely useless when most the population has to drive 15-20min to get to a station to take a train to the other side of town, at which point they would still be a few miles from anything at all interesting. What, fiddle around waiting for buses? Meanwhile, instead of being crammed like cattle in a vehicle with a big bulls-eye painted on the side for terrorists, I and most American's could more effectively be chillin' on the highway getting to their destination faster and more comfortably in a car.

Some cities, like NYC, have a legitimate need for public transport, and they've got it. The rest of the US? I dont see it. yet.

RE: What if they said no?
By jacarte8 on 7/12/2007 3:02:36 PM , Rating: 4
Yes, excellent idea... let's take freight rails away from the companies that own them and give the rails and land to Amtrack... excellent idea.

That way we reduce car traffic by putting more tractor-trailors on the road.


What we need is more reliable rail service between major cities. There is not a reliable rail line in and out of Atlanta, Charlotte, Raleigh, or Norfolk (the region where I live). I live in one of the smaller places where Amtrack happens to pass through, but the delays on the once-daily trains can be anywhere from 2-6 hours, thereby making passenger rail completely useless.

RE: What if they said no?
By B on 7/12/2007 4:31:39 PM , Rating: 2
Have you been working under the tutelage of Hugo Chavez?

RE: What if they said no?
By ElFenix on 7/16/2007 10:37:03 AM , Rating: 2
I would definitely pay an extra tax if it meant that I could go anywhere in the country in a fast, competitively-priced way.

airport taxes not enough for you?

RE: What if they said no?
By joker380 on 7/16/2007 2:46:03 PM , Rating: 2
so wrong, we have money to spend on wars but not on our own public transportation. Lol.

RE: What if they said no?
By BigT383 on 7/17/2007 3:09:29 AM , Rating: 2
Actually, uh... No, we don't have money to spend on wars.

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