17 nov 21

Leading fleets sign COP26 EV Declaration

The official 'COP26 Declaration on accelerating the transition to 100% zero emission cars and vans' from the climate change conference in Glasgow has challenged business fleets to transition to zero emission vehicles more quickly than any other sector of road transport.

Twenty-seven major national and international fleets, including ABB, E.ON, GlaxoSmithKline, IKEA, Siemens, Vattenfall and Zurich, as well as leasing companies LeasePlan and Zenith, signed the Declaration, pledging that: “As business fleet owners and operators, or shared mobility platforms, we will work towards 100% of our car and van fleets being zero emission vehicles by 2030, or earlier where markets allow.” 

Public sector fleets

This deadline is well in advance of cities, states, and regional governments, which made a similar pledge to: “Work towards converting our owned or leased car and van fleets to zero emission vehicles by 2035 at the latest.”

These regional and local authorities also committed to introduce policies that will enable, incentivise and accelerate the transition to zero emission vehicles as soon as possible.

National bans on ICE cars and vans

National governments in leading markets confirmed they will work towards all sales of new cars and vans being zero emission by 2035, and globally by 2040. However, the United States, China, France and Germany did not sign the Declaration.

The Declaration is not legally binding, prompting green campaigner Transport & Environment (T&E) to call for targets to be set down in law.

Julia Poliscanova, senior director for vehicles and e-mobility at T&E, said: “The car industry’s electrification plans place it ahead of regulators on climate action. But these won’t materialise without actual targets to end car emissions by 2035 at the latest. The US and Europe, especially Germany and France, need to lead.”

Fossil-fuel dependent

The International Transport Forum at the OECD said that not only does transport emit around 25% of the energy-related CO2 that feeds global warming, but that it remains more than 90% dependent on fossil fuels. Without a swift transition to zero emission transport, the ITF said the world will not achieve the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C.

EVs essential to fuel economy targets

According to the International Energy Agency, fuel consumption needs to decrease by 4.3% per year on average from 2019 to 2030 to meet the Global Fuel Economy Initiative target of reducing  by 50% the fuel consumption of new light-duty vehicles by 2030 relative to 2005. This can only be achieved by stronger policies to increase the market shares of efficient electric cars, said the IEA.

It called on countries to align align their climate pledges with legislation on fuel economy, and made 10 recommendations for policy makers. Its suggestions include fuel taxes to provide consumers with incentives to buy fuel-efficient and zero-emission vehicles; policies to encourage drivers of plug-in hybrid vehicles to recharge their cars; and a commitment that developing countries do not become a dumping ground for old internal combustion engine vehicles remarketed from leading nations.

The full list of fleets and fleet operators that signed up to the 'COP26 Declaration on accelerating the transition to 100% zero emission cars and vans' is:


Astra Zeneca

BT Group







Highland Electric Fleets HP Inc.


Ingka Group/IKEA

LeasePlan Corporation

National Grid

Novo Nordisk




SK Networks

Sky UK Limited



Uber Technologies Inc.






Image: Shutterstock






Authored by: Jonathan Manning