Road transport today & tomorrow

Road transport today and tomorrow

Transportation is one of the major sources of greenhouse gas emissions. In 2018, road transportation in the European Union (EU-27) produced the equivalent of 786 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions (Mt CO2e)1, which represents 73% of all transport emissions in Europe. Addressing emissions from road transport is thus paramount to reducing the climate impact of mobility. 

The road to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions requires several parallel paths. It is all about prioritizing and making choices. According to a European Commission’s Impact Assessment Study2, internal combustion engines will still power the majority of vehicles in 2030 even in the model that assumes the fastest shift to electrification. For heavy goods vehicles, diesel will still be by far the most commonly used energy source3. When it comes to addressing road transport emissions, renewable diesel continues to provide a cost-efficient solution for the existing diesel fleet.

truck on the road

Belgium targets: By 2030, 35% less greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions compared to 2005.

road transport forest

Meet 2030 goals by 20:30 tonight

Electric and plug-in hybrids are becoming increasingly popular. They accounted for 23%4 of the sales of all passenger cars in 2020. However, most vehicles on the road today, and for years to come, use internal combustion engines. Many passenger cars and the overwhelming majority of goods vehicles are powered by diesel engines. Biofuels, such as Neste MY Renewable Diesel are immediately available solutions that can enable transport to meet the European Union’s ambitious target to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in 2030 by at least 55% compared to the levels in 1990. The recent Smart & Sustainable Mobility strategy5 goal of 30 million EVs on the road in the EU represents only 12% of the current fleet, thus a solution is needed to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of the majority of vehicles.

Breakdown of European passenger cars by energy source

Chart 1
  • 3.4% Alternative fuels
  • 0.4% Battery electric
  • 0.8% Plug-in hybrid electric
  • 42.3% Diesel
  • 52.9% Petrol

Breakdown of European light goods vehicles by energy source

Chart 2
  • 2.4% Alternative fuels
  • 0.3% Battery electric
  • 0.0% Plug-in hybrid electric
  • 7.8% Petrol
  • 89.5% Diesel 

Breakdown of European buses by energy source

Chart 3
  • 3.3% Alternative fuels
  • 0.6% Battery electric
  • 0.7% Plug-in hybrid electric
  • 0.8% Petrol
  • 94.5% Diesel

Breakdown of European heavy goods vehicles by energy source

Chart 4
  • 2.9% Alternative fuels
  • 0.4% Battery electric
  • 0.1% Plug-in hybrid electric
  • 0.1% Petrol 
  • 96.5% Diesel

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