In order to reduce the fuel consumption of automotive vehicles the EU decided to adopt a labelling system similar to the energy information provided with household appliances. This new label, that will classify tyres from best-performing “A” class to the worst “G” class, will accompany all new tyres distributed from a factory to a shop from 1 November 2012.
According to the Parliament’s press office: “The increase in fuel efficiency could lead to a CO2 cut equivalent to 1.3 million cars off the road a year.” Choosing better-quality tyres will contribute a lot to reaching CO2 targets; since road transport is responsible for 25% of all CO2 emissions in Europe and tyres are responsible for 20-30% of the total energy use of vehicles, said Ivo Belet, Belgian MEP who led the negotiations.
The agreement reached represents a compromise and its effectiveness has already been criticized. In fact, in order to ensure the adoption of this project, the original idea of making stickers on each tyre compulsory had to be abandoned. The compulsory aspect has been withdrawn and only the obligation to show the label to the end user before the tyre is sold remains.
According to the critics, the system will practically work on a voluntary basis from the producer/distributor and from the consumer side, which is not sufficient.
The compromise text agreed on 1 October still has to be formally approved by the Council.