Mike Stevens | Nov 23, 2009

A REPORT FROM the National Transport Commission shows that the Australian automotive industry is ahead of schedule in meeting a voluntary target of 222 g/km of CO2 by 2010.

Despite the absence of Federally mandated emissions standards, the industry has achieved a 12 percent reduction in emissions over the past six years.

The Rudd Government announced earlier this year that it would discuss the introduction of mandatory standards with state premiers and the industry, but little progress appears to have been made in the time since.

Australia's voluntary emissions target of 222g/km by 2010 is nearly double the European Union's mandatory target of 120g/km by 2015.

Japan, China and the United States have introduced tough emissions targets of their own.

Unlike Europe, Australia's target includes light commercial vehicles, lightening the load on manufacturers of regular passenger vehicles.

According to figures from the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), the average carbon output of all new passenger and light commercial vehicles sold in Australia last year hovers around the 222.4g/km mark - not far off Australia’s 2010 target of 222g/km.

By comparison, the European Union's target of 120g/km by 2015 will require a 25 percent improvement on current levels.

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