24 October 2008 | Jake Kanter
Public sector buyers in the European Union (EU) will have to consider the environmental impact of purchasing vehicles, if a new bill is passed.
The European Parliament has endorsed plans to make standards on energy consumption, carbon emissions and other pollutants mandatory contract award criteria for public sector fleets. EU member states are expected to adopt the proposals in the near future.
Purchasers will be asked to evaluate not only the price of the vehicles, but their environmental impact throughout their lifetime. The directive, proposed by the European Commission, also aims to influence similar decisions in the private sector.
Antonio Tajani, vice-president of the European Commission, said in a statement: "This agreement marks an important step forward in the energy, climate and environment policies of the European Union. The public sector in Europe will set an example by promoting new and better vehicle technologies for a future sustainable transport system."