NEW vehicles will be given a labelled rating in terms of their carbon dioxide emissions from next month in a bid to make the consumer more aware of the environmental impact of exhaust gases.
The A to G rating will be based on the amount of CO2 produced in grammes per kilometre in mixed urban and rural driving and ranges from the low, Toyota Prius 104g/km, to the high, VW Touareg 5l, which produces 333g/km.
The system will apply to all new cars at the point of sale from July 1.
Environment Minister John Gormley said: “The seven colour-coded bands will be familiar to consumers from the energy label for certain electrical goods, such as fridges, washing machines, electric cookers and light bulbs. The approach is intended to assist buyers in evaluating the environmental impacts of different cars.”
The system will strengthen existing EU requirements and provide information in relation to VRT and running costs, he said.
The system will be in tandem with the recently introduced changes to Vehicle Registration Tax and annual motor tax for new cars registered on or after July 1.
Both taxes will be calculated on the basis of CO2 emissions from vehicles.
The reduction of CO2 emissions was an important step in reducing national greenhouse gas emissions and in meeting Ireland’s commitments under the Kyoto protocol.
“The objective of the CO2-based tax structure for cars is to influence the purchasing decisions of consumers by rewarding the buyers of low-emitting cars and charging a premium on less efficient vehicles,” Mr Gormley said.
“From July, anyone buying a new car can make a choice on investment and environmental grounds by purchasing a low CO2 emitting vehicle. As well as enjoying the benefits of a lower rate of motor tax and any saving on the pre-July purchase price of the car, they will be making a very positive personal contribution to the national response to climate change,” he said.
“Anyone who makes the choice to purchase a high CO2 car, like the Range Rover Vogue supercharged which produces 376g/km, will have to pay a higher rate of motor tax, in addition to any price rise as a result of the VRT changes.”
The labelling system will be introduced initially on a non-statutory basis, in cooperation with the Society of the Irish Motor Industry.
“I see the improvements in vehicle labelling as apositive step in enabling Irish motorists to make adirect personal contribution to combating climate change,” Mr Gormley said.
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