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The suitability of AdBlue in Arctic conditions

Question écrite de Mme Henna VIRKKUNEN - Commission européenne

Question de Mme Henna VIRKKUNEN,

Diffusée le 14 avril 2024

Subject: The suitability of AdBlue in Arctic conditions

Under the Euro 6 exhaust emission regulations, all new vehicles type-approved after 1 September 2014 must comply with stricter exhaust emission limits. The regulations stipulate the use of a urea solution, which is registered under the trade name AdBlue, in most diesel engines to reduce emission levels. However, the solution cannot withstand Arctic conditions, as it freezes at -11°C.

The regulation does not specifically require the use of AdBlue: other similar solutions may be used instead. The regulations also do not specify the properties of the solution in question, such as its composition or frost resistance. These are instead specified in the ISO International Standard.

A solution manufactured in line with the ISO standard has a freezing point of -11 °C. The freezing of the solution results in the failure of emission control devices – even when they have been serviced according to maintenance schedules – and in high repair costs for both companies and consumers. Where company vehicles are concerned, costs are also incurred from the revenue lost during the repair time. The requirements applying to the current solution came into force a decade ago under the Euro 6 regulation, and they have not been changed in the new Euro 7 regulation. A study carried out in Finland suggests that 70 % of transport companies were forced to repair emission control devices in vehicles during the winter of 2023-2024, resulting in costs running into tens of thousands of euros. This situation in winter conditions is intolerable.

1. What steps will the Commission take to ensure that a solution that is compatible with Arctic conditions can be used in the EU?

2. How does the Commission intend to exert its influence on the standardisation development process to ensure that AdBlue can function in Arctic conditions?

3. How can we ensure that, where sparsely populated areas are concerned, transport that is vital for communities can continue to function when emission control devices are failing owing to extremely cold weather?


Réponse de Commission européenne

En attente de réponse

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