EU puts brakes on Danish plans to scrap fossil fuel cars

Ritzau/The Local
Ritzau/The Local - [email protected]
EU puts brakes on Danish plans to scrap fossil fuel cars
File photo: Ida Marie Odgaard / Ritzau Scanpix

The previous and current governments in Denmark have both stated aims to end sales of fossil fuel-powered cars by 2030, but the goal could be blocked by the EU.


A letter from EU commissioner Elzbieta Bienkowska to the Danish parliament’s Europe Committee (Europaudvalg) states that banning the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles would be in breach of EU law, newspaper Berlingske reports.

Banning of marketing, import or registration of petrol or diesel cars by a member state would infringe EU type-approval legislation, Bienkowska writes in the letter.

A change in EU law would therefore be required should Denmark be able to implement such a ban.

This is unlikely to be achieved by the 2030 deadline, said Peter Nedergaard, a political sciences professor at the University of Copenhagen.

Germany’s interests in car manufacturing and laws for automakers is a key reason for this, Nedergaard said.

“It’s clear that electric cars are a cross-border phenomenon. The cars drive across national borders and are produced and sold across the EU. That’s why this area must be regulated at the EU level,” he said.

“The question is then how regulation of electric cars should be done. It stands to reason that Germany, as a leading car producer, has major interests here,” he added.

READ ALSO: Denmark supports ending fossil fuel cars in EU by 2030


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