The Interactive Fuel Efficiency Questionnaire will get you thinking about possible strategies for supporting a cleaner, more fuel efficient vehicle fleet. Based on a series of questions, it is designed to give you an idea of current policies along with actions that support such policies. Once completed, the answers to the questionnaire can be printed out and used as a guide line in policy development.
Yes – Over 75% of the world’s light duty market has fuel efficiency, fuel consumption, or carbon dioxide (CO2) standards. As clean vehicle and fuel efficiency technologies continue to evolve, it is important to revise approaches to and policies for auto fuel efficiency to match the pace of technology and innovation. Ideally, policies and penalties should be technology ‘pushing’ – always enabling and encouraging industry and consumer progression towards best available practice and technologies. There are also benefits to aligning your fuel efficiency policy regionally with neighbouring and common-market countries, or with international standards. The US EPA Standards and the Japanese 'Top Runner' method for light duty vehicles are established emission and fuel efficiency standard systems.
Ambitious policies to promote clean and efficient vehicles will also discourage backsliding. Due to the instability of oil prices, consumers and automakers are often unwilling to invest in more fuel efficient technology development and purchase. Large-scale, early deployment projects are important to showcase the viability of cleaner vehicle technology, which is critical for raising public awareness and acceptance, and gaining experience by manufacturers and public authorities. Standards are valuable for increasing regulatory certainty for manufacturers faced with long investment cycles, enabling them to bring new technology to the market. It is important that standards are renewed and tightened over the years in order to keep fuel economy improving. The Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI) supports governments to develop sound policies to encourage fuel efficiency improvement for vehicles produced and/or sold in their countries, including access to expertise and networks of practitioners.
Yes – Developing a fuel efficiency policy and supporting standards and fiscal incentive regimes require a good assessment and analysis of your country’s baseline auto fleet conditions and scenarios for future growth and emissions. It is important that your fuel efficiency policy fully exploits appropriate technology, emerging technology and local enabling conditions. These policies should also be coordinated with air quality systems and fuel quality and vehicle emission standards. The Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI) supports governments to develop sound policies to encourage fuel efficiency improvement for vehicles produced and/or sold in their countries, including access to expertise and networks of practitioners.
No- Fuel efficiency or CO2 emissions standards are an effective way of overcoming the natural aversion to investing in fuel efficiency that result from the inherent instability of oil prices. A fuel efficiency policy is a very useful and beneficial option for saving consumers and governments money in oil imports, reducing air pollution and combating climate change, reducing the vulnerability of your country to oil price spikes, and ensuring a level playing field for vehicle manufacturers. Fuel efficiency standards also enable technological improvements in automotive fuel efficiency, and also aid in the rapid and wider diffusion of technological innovations.
Delaying the setting of standards will result in possible missed opportunities to bridge technological gaps between your country and countries with advanced vehicle standards and efficient and clean technologies. Ultimately, fuel efficiency standards in many developing countries can result in a cleaner, more fuel efficient vehicle fleet. For more information on benefits of a fuel efficiency program, click here.
The Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI) supports governments to develop sound policies to encourage fuel efficiency improvement for vehicles produced and/or sold in their countries, including access to expertise and networks of practitioners.
Yes- Controlling the level and type of vehicle technology entering a country by using import restrictions can provide an effective way to force fuel economy on new and second-hand cars. In fact, most countries have put in place certain restrictions on new and used vehicles brought into a country based on age, technology (e.g., diesel vehicles), and emissions. These often go hand-in-hand with registration fees and taxation instruments. However, restrictions on used vehicles for environmental concerns must be balanced with economic and social considerations – where affordable personal mobility is impeded by restricted import policies, public transit alternatives must be planned and made available.
Import restrictions are a fast, easy and relatively cost-neutral route to improving the fuel efficiency of your vehicle fleet. Restrictions based on age of vehicles, vehicle technology or emission requirements are an effective way to force fuel efficiency on new and second hand vehicles. Many countries do not allow importation of used vehicles at all, whereas some have no limitations on age, yet have restrictions based on safety standards, emissions and fuel efficiency ratings. It is important to ensure your country is not the recipient of old, fuel inefficient and highly polluting vehicles from neighbours or over seas. Such vehicles can contribute to air pollution, congestion on the roads, and can be costly and potentially harmful to the environment when their useful life has come to an end, not to mention they can be a significant drain on scarce and expensive energy resources. For more information on which countries have import restrictions, click here (this will be a link to the revised matrix which will show which countries have what instruments).
If your country imports vehicles, vehicle registration and collection of vehicle data for tracking and analysis purposes is easily done at the point of entry for vehicles into a country. Whether second--hand or new, the point of entry is often the best and easiest way to collect information on your vehicle fleet. This information will allow your country to develop a database which tracks all vehicles imported and exported from your country. Information in the database could include vehicle numbers in your country, detailing age of the vehicles, size, make/model, configuration (e.g. fuel type, transmission type, engine displacement). After collection of such information, a baseline of your country’s automotive fuel efficiency can be established, which is essential when designing a fuel efficiency policy and identifying future fuel efficiency targets to work towards. More information on developing a base line can be found here.
Yes- If your country is a vehicle manufacturer, the best way to improve the fuel efficiency of your vehicle fleet is to set standards for domestic manufacturers to meet. It is important to ensure policies and standards are not designed to favour one technology or manufacturer over another, but enable innovation and adoption of best available technology, and are cost-effective for consumers.
There is no information
Yes – Fiscal incentives complement auto fuel efficiency policies and standards, enabling their implementation and adoption by industry and consumers. However, after economies of scale have been reached, certain fiscal incentives, such as rebates or tax credits on clean vehicle technologies, are no longer needed. Manufacturers have a break even point, where once sales meet a certain quantity, the manufacturer will make profit on the sale of the vehicle, and thus the subsidy is no longer needed.
No – Fiscal incentives for clean vehicles can be extremely useful in supporting the widespread adoption of clean fuel and vehicle technologies. When developed and implemented correctly, fiscal incentives, such as government subsidies, can speed up the emergence of new technologies. Fiscal incentives can also provide a ‘safety net’ for manufacturers to develop new, cleaner vehicle technologies. Fiscal incentives help minimize the financial risk to manufacturers of investing in new technologies and for consumers, who would often be unwilling to spend money on new, often more expensive technologies. However, it is important to avoid developing inequalities in the market and to allow the best technologies to break through naturally.
Yes – Compare your labelling system with countries around the world.
No - Information on the fuel efficiency of vehicles is essential for consumers to understand the choices available to them and the fuel savings possible. In isolation, labelling systems are unlikely to lead to significant fuel efficiency improvements. However, fuel efficiency labels do help consumers compare vehicle choices, and can help consumers understand the tax impliaions over the lifetime of the vehicle in fiscal regimes that incentivise fuel efficiency. A vehicle labelling programme is also fairly inexpensive and easy to implement. For more information on labelling programs, click here.
Yes- Lead free, low sulphur fuels (50ppm and lower) are essential for many clean vehicle technologies. Recognizing that fuels and vehicles work together as a system, the greatest benefits can be achieved by combining lower sulphur fuels with appropriate vehicle and emission control technologies. This approach has proven to be more effective than treating fuels, engines, or emission controls separately.
Car manufacturers are continuing to improve the design of engines to improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions. For example, diesel engines with high pressure injection systems are more efficient and less polluting. However, these recent diesel engine technologies do not function well with high levels of sulphur fuel, operating at maximum efficiency with near-zero sulphur fuels. For the latest information on auto fuel quality, including fuel sulphur levels, visit UNEP’s transport information hub.
Both conventional vehicles and advanced technology vehicles (e.g., hybrid electric vehicles) with aalytic converters can be used with high sulphur petrol fuel as long as the fuel is unleaded. However, emission reduction technologies have a better efficiency with low and ultra-low sulphur fuels. The only technical requirement is unleaded fuel in order to ensure proper function of the aalytic converter.
This is very promising for the introduction of HEVs to developing countries, as unleaded petrol fuel is now available in most countries. Since fuel requirements set by car importers and car manufacturers can differ from region to region, one should check the requirements set by them to ensure the vehicle warrantee is maintained. If modern emission control technologies are used, e.g. NOx traps or Diesel Oxidation Catalyst, low sulphur fuels (500 ppm or less) will be required.
No – Reducing emissions from motor vehicles is an important component of an overall strategy for reducing air pollution, especially in cities in developing and transitional countries where population and vehicle ownership are growing rapidly.
One essential component of reducing vehicle emissions is to eliminate lead from petrol; in addition to being a toxic pollutant in its own right, the presence of lead in petrol also inhibits the functioning of aalytic converters and other emission control technologies. Low sulphur fuel (both diesel and petrol, 50 ppm or less) is essential for lower emissions of PM and SOx, in addition to being a requirement for emission filters and advanced emission controls.
Most clean vehicle technologies do not work properly, or at all, without low sulphur fuels, and the most advanced technologies will not work unless ultra low sulphur fuel (15ppm and lower) is used. To make the most of clean vehicle technologies available on the market, and to take advantage of advanced vehicles, available for import to any country, low sulphur fuels are an essential first step. For more information on lead-free, low sulphur fuels, please visit the UNEP’s Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles.
Using diesel with lower levels of sulphur will reduce the emissions of sulfate, sulphur dioxide, and particulate matter (PM) substantially and will enable the introduction of advanced emission control technologies.
For more detailed information on cleaner fuels and UNEP support available to help your country develop plans to improve fuel quality, see the Setting the Foundation portion of the tool.