Germany and Austria are planning to charge hauliers new tolls based on how much CO2 their trucks emit - and other European countries will follow suit.
Prague 11. October 2023 - Tolls based on CO2 emissions - This is the principle on which trucks will soon be charged in Germany and Austria. These two nations will be the first to implement the new EU directive. According to this directive, heavy goods vehicles will be categorized into five classes based on their CO2 emissions. These classifications will then be used to determine the appropriate toll rates. In order for trucks to get a better CO2 class (and therefore lower tolls), hauliers must provide the information necessary to calculate a vehicle's CO2 in a timely manner, points out Eurowag, Europe's leading provider of integrated road transport solutions. Otherwise, all heavy goods vehicles with an internal combustion engine will automatically be classified as Class 1. CO emission class2, which means a toll increase of up to 70-80% for hauliers.
While until now the toll calculation in EU countries has included the emission class of the engine according to EURO standards (which takes into account, for example, emissions of nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide or particulate matter), under the Eurovignette Directive the amount of CO2 produced should also be included in the toll calculation. Vehicles that qualify for a better toll rate (i.e. they emit less CO2) are clearly defined - conditions include, for example, first registration after 1 January 2012. and before July 2019. However, there are many more parameters that are used to calculate the CO2 emission class (see box). Hauliers who have vehicles eligible for a classification higher than 1 are particularly interested in this data about CO2 classes.
The new rules for calculating tolls in Germany and Austria are expected to come into force at the end of this year or early next year. While Germany tentatively envisages a deadline of 1. December 2023, Austria plans to change it from 1. January 2024. Other EU Member States are expected to implement the Eurovignette Directive by March 2025 at the latest.
"Although the legislation has not yet been finally approved and it is possible that the deadlines will be delayed, we encourage hauliers to provide their toll service providers with all the data needed to classify vehicles into the relevant CO2 classes as soon as possible. If they don't, the vehicle will automatically fall into the highest emission - and therefore the most expensive toll - class," explains Ferdinand Butaš, Toll Product Manager at Eurowag.
All the parameters that are necessary for the classification of a vehicle in the CO2 emission class can be found in the Certificate of Conformity (CoC), Customer Information File (CIF) or in the vehicle's technical certificate. If the owner of the vehicle does not have these documents, the only solution is to contact the truck manufacturer, who will reissue the documents. The time it takes to "reissue" documents can vary from country to country. In some countries the manufacturers' representative offices may charge a fee for this service. The relevant data must then be manually entered into the toll service provider's client portal/system.
The second new feature of the German toll system is the obligation for all hauliers to provide more information on the weight of their vehicles. While the maximum permissible weight of the vehicle was used to calculate the toll (F.2 on the technical certificate), the maximum technically permissible gross laden weight (F.1) must now be entered. Eurowag estimates that this update will affect up to 55,000 vehicles operated by its customers.
"We want to motivate our customers to comply with the obligation to update their vehicle data on time. In the case of the mandated F.1 weight data in Germany, this can help them avoid a possible fine. For the new classification into CO2 classes , for a change, hauliers are offered the possibility of lower toll charges if their vehicles meet the relevant parameters. Moreover, it is almost certain that in addition to Germany and Austria, other countries, including the Czech Republic, will join the CO2 toll in the next few months or years. Updating the data, or requesting the reissue of CoC and CIF documents, is simply not an option for the carrier anyway. At Eurowag, we therefore want to help them make the transition as smooth as possible, not only to emission tolls, but also to cleaner and more efficient mobility," says Ferdinand Butaš
Eurowag offers a range of services to hauliers in the areas of efficiency and emissions reduction. In addition to toll solutions, this includes telematics services, fuel cards, as well as financial services and tax refunds. Tax refunds can help companies overcome a sudden increase in toll fees, stabilize cash flow or reduce bureaucratic burdens. One option is, for example, a VAT refund service for tolls, including the possibility to pre-finance the refund.
"Given that the upcoming changes will mean more expensive tolls for most customers, we anticipate that there will be interest in increasing credit limits," explains Ferdinand Butaš.
Eurowag has long been involved in reducing emissions from freight transport. This year, the company has introduced two new LNG stations and is also focusing on electromobility. Its goal is to offer its customers a complete portfolio of clean mobility services.
For more information on the services Eurowag provides to its customers, please visit the company's website. Customers using the EVA tolling solution can update the vehicle data necessary to calculate CO2 emissions in their Client portal.
Eurowag has been providing integrated mobility and payment services to international transport companies for more than 25 years. It is one of the fastest growing companies in Europe in its field. Its mission is to make the operation of the millions of trucks crossing Europe cleaner, fairer and more efficient. To this end, Eurowag offers its customers products and services based on modern digital technologies, ranging from payments for conventional and alternative fuels, electric vehicle charging and toll payments, to tax refunds, telematics and navigation, to a range of financial services and clean mobility advice.
Eurowag also supports innovation in philanthropy. As part of the Philanthropy and You project, in which ¾ of the company's employees regularly participate, each Eurowag employee receives an individual budget for philanthropy, as well as complete confidence in how the money is spent. The project has already inspired several other large IT corporations to undertake similar activities. For more information, visit https://www.eurowag.com/ or detailed info about Tolls based on CO2 emissions.
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