Mobility Basic Figures
Source: EU energy and transport in figures - Statistical pocketbook, 2010
Figures published with the EU funded project ALTERMOTIVE show that the total energy consumption of passenger transport in Romania has grown continuously from 49 PJ in 1992 to 88 PJ in 2006. The total stock of cars in Romania increased continuously from 1.6 millions in 1992 to 3.6 millions in 2006. The number of diesel cars has increased by almost 60% since 2005, while the gasoline fuelled cars only by 16%.
Only LPG vehicles have a notable market share in Romania but with a strong downward oriented trend (in 2007/8 about 25,000 LPG vehicles were accounted compared with nearly 60,000 in 2002) regarding alternatively fuelled vehicles. According to the EU funded project BEST there is no vehicle stock for E85 flexifuel in Romania. The national auto-park is one of the oldest in Europe, with an average age of 13.5 years. With respect to the National Environmental Protection Agency, in Romania more than 1.2 millions cars, which are at least 12 years old, are registered.
According to findings within the EU funded project COMPRO the diversity in terms of fuel technology in use on the bus market for public transport is a lot lower than in other countries. Indeed, neither CNG nor hybrid public transport vehicles can yet be found on the market, even though Romanian research initiatives for these two technologies are planned, but did not started before 2007/2008. The only alternative technology currently in use is biodiesel (LPG is evaluated of not being an alternative technology within COMPRO).
Within the EU funded project framework CIVITAS the thematic group for clean fuels and vehicles is composed of a number of pioneering activities i.e. in Bucharest, Romania. In recent years, efforts were made on making vehicles, fuels and transport greener, while still being efficient in terms of resources.
The City of Suceava also part of the CIVITAS can be seen as the most important sample case in Romania for realising a sustainable transport strategy also using various kinds of clean vehicle technology. In 2004/05 public transport in Suceava was still provided using old, pre-Euro buses and some Euro 2 minibuses. The level of traffic and emissions from public transport exceeded EU limits. The percentage of existing LPG and alternative fuel vehicles (buses, taxis, vans, minibuses) in Suceava was very low (approximately 4-7%). By looking at the experiences of other cities and regions across Europe that have well developed traffic systems, Suceava city has set off to promote a set of interrelated strategies that aim to bring about a sustainable transport system. On important measure was to turn the entire public transport fleet into a Euro3 one and out of it at least a quota of 40% of buses to be fuelled with LPG and 20% of local transport company minibuses to be equipped with particular filter systems. The urban public transport serviced by the local transport company fleet was modernized being provided by 30 new IRISBUS IVECO buses, respecting an updated timetable and routing (8 new routes) and all old buses were removed. 15 buses were converted to using LPG, of which 1 bus was equipped with a converting system produced on the Romanian market, for promotion reasons.
The reduction of pollutant and noise levels were as follows (initially the LTC fleet renewal and afterwards the conversion of ½ of the fleet to using LPG instead of diesel): CO2: -11%/year, CO: -3%/year, NOx: -15%/year, PM10: -49%/year. Furthermore, alternative fuels and clean vehicles were promoted within marketing and promotion campaigns through events organised in the Low Emission Zone of Suceava (also established within the CIVITAS project) targeting the private and public transport sectors, mainly taxis, in order to raise awareness and acceptability for LPG fuel and LPG converting systems. The fuel providers were tackled and important evaluation activity took place. The launching of the new LPG fuelled DACIA model on the market increased the measure value. Campaigns for different vehicle taxation according to the fuel consumed were deployed. As overall result of these measures there was an 31.13% increase of LPG fuel taxis due to converted systems and launching LPG fuel vehicles onto the market, a 5% increase LPG fuel minibuses operating public transport and a 34.57% increase of LPG fuel sales and also the number of fuel stations increased (from 6 to 9 in 2007).
The geo-information system European Environmental Atlas (http://technologies.ewindows.eu.org/atlas_map) list 25 refuelling stations for LPG in Romania (The webportal www.poiplaza.com/index.php list a network of about 150 LPG refuelling stations all over the country). No refuelling opportunities for CNG, E85 flexifuel, biodiesel and hydrogen are listed (cross-checked with various sources).
In Romania there is a uniform VAT rate of 19% on the acquisition of vehicles. As defined in law no. 50/2008 the registration tax for vehicles is based on cylinder capacity, emissions on pollutants and CO2 in compliance with Euro emission standards (hence it is called car pollution tax). The tax calculation also includes a progressive factor with regard to the age of a vehicle. There is a 25% tax deduction for diesel cars with a particular filter. Electric and hybrid cars are exempt from the registration tax. In response to the economic crisis in 2009 new cars registered between 15 December 2008 and 31 December 2009 are exempt from this tax if their engine capacity is below 2,000 cylinder capacity and if they meet Euro 4 or 5 standards. The tax on ownership (circulation tax) which has to be annually paid for passenger cars depends on cylinder capacity and for commercial vehicles on weight as well as the number of axles. The tax is paid from any person that owns a mean of transport. It is a local tax. The tax is payable in two periods: on 31 of March and on 30 of September.
The fee on means of transport is not to be applied to, for instance: historical vehicles as defined by law, means of transport of public institutions, etc. The tax rate varies from 7 RON to 120 RON for each group of cylinder capacity of 200 cm3 or fraction of it in accordance with the capacity of the engine. Up to 1 January 2011 the pollution tax is applied also for Euro 5 vehicles. It was decided that the fee of Euro 5 is 116 EUR for new cars and 91 EUR for two year old cars with max. 1,100 cc engine power. The fee will raise to 680 EUR and 618 EUR for new cars and two year old passenger cars of 2,000 cc as well as for a 3,000 cc engine. The new car tax will be 2,160 EUR for the new 1,706 cars respectively for those which are two years old. Also the tax amounts for Euro 4, 3 and 2 have changed.
In Romania there is an excise duty on fuel of 0.336 EUR/litre and 0.284 EUR/litre for diesel. The fuel excise tax for natural gas is about 0.275 EUR/m3. Biofuels are almost fully exempt from the excise tax (tax reduction of approximately 95%).
In October 2010 the Romanian Government has begun procedures to introduce a fee for highway traffic in parallel with the existing system of vignette, arguing that the amounts allocated from the budget and the revenues are not sufficient to maintain highways to be built with EU funding. So far this system does not contain any environmental incentive component.
In recent years Romania has adopted a decision to subsidize the scrapping of used cars older than 10 years (the program is known as "jalopy") to purchase a new car. The adoption of Emergence Ordinance no. 99/2004 and law no. 72/ 2005 was a first step to call in 15,000 vehicles used more than 12 years. The owners of these cars were paid 3,000 LEI to give up their cars for dismember, providing that they will purchase a new vehicle from producers and authorised dealers. The total amount for this programme was 45,000,000 LEI. The programme was prolonged on an annual base with great success. In September 2010 almost 87% of the annual budget of the programme was exhausted (annual incentive programme 2010 with a budget of 722 million LEI to decommissioning of 190,000 vehicles older than 10 years; single voucher value with a nominal value of 3,800 LEI).
In principle there are European Funds to finance sustainable energy projects in the new programming period 2007-2013. For Romania the Environment Operation Programme made available a budget of about 4.5 bill EUR. In Romania the fund is managed by the Romanian Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development allowing among others the acquisition of new waste transport vehicles by local authorities. The aim is the introduction of the best available technology for SO2, NOx and dust reduction. There is a 95% financing of investments by EU funds and a 2-5% local co-financing obligation.
The provision of the Directive 2003/30/EC has been transposed entirely in the Government Decision, no. 1844/2005 concerning the promotion of the use of biofuels and other renewable fuels for transport, published in the Official Monitor, no. 44 from 18 January 2006. Romania should ensure the introduction on the market for transport purposes, of a minimum percentage for biofuels and other renewable fuels of 5.75% until 2010, calculated on basis of energy content of all petrol and diesel used in transport.
Romania has adopted the European regulations under HG 313/18.03.2004 on providing information on fuel consumption and CO2 emissions of new cars based on a coloured scale. The colours range from GREEN for cars with the lowest CO2 emissions (through the colours of the spectrum to RED for the most highly polluting vehicles.
The City of Suceava has established and gradually extended a Low Emission Zone (the only city in Romania with a LEZ). The purpose of this measure was to reduce traffic emissions in the city centre, to create more “environmentally friendly areas” and to improve the quality of life in the city. By the end of June 2005, 5% of the historical city centre was designated as an LEZ (established under the CIVITAS umbrella). Under the umbrella of the EU funded project SMILE the LEZ from the historical city centre was spatially extended in other residential areas by means of introducing the concept of Eco-routes. Suceava Municipality intend to provide the general public with alternatives to the current traffic structure and to existing vehicles.
According to national legislation, the maximum sulphur content in gasoline was set to 150 mg/kg as of January the 1st, 2005 and further decreased to 50 mg/kg starting with the 1st of January 2007. Diesel fuel sulphur content was enforced to decrease from a regulated maximum of 350 mg/kg before January 1st, 2007 to 50 mg/kg from the 1st of January 2007.
Unleaded fuels are banned in Romania since 2004. A maximum of 10 gr/litre sulphur is allowed for diesel and petrol.
The public procurement system has been implemented in Romania following the fulfilment of the measures provided by the Government Decision no. 901/2005 regarding the approval of the public procurement system reform strategy, as well as following the action plan for its implementation in 2005-2007.
In Article 35 (3) (technical specifications) and Article 176 (contract award) it is defined in a very general way that the contract authority can apply environmental criteria for public procurement decision. Specific criteria for the purchase of vehicles are not yet applied.
The Romanian e-government implementation started in early 2000. There is a well established electronic system for public procurement (ESPP – the national e-procurement web portal available at www.e-licitatie.ro) also including tenders for vehicle purchase or leasing. The catalogue database as backbone of this system includes technical specification of vehicles including emission standards but no specific reference is made to the environmental performance. The platform is not used for joint procurement so far.
www.mt.ro; webpage of the Romanian Ministry of Transport and infrastructure with general information and data of road transport/traffic.
www.rarom.ro; webpage of the Romanian Automobile Registry with a pollution tax calculator, certified workshops for LPG vehicles, etc.
www.mfinante.ro; webpage of the Romanian Ministry of Finance with information on vehicle taxation
www.mmediu.ro; webpage of the Romanian Minister of Environment and Forests with general information on vehicle environmental emission in Romania
www.anpm.ro; webpage of the Romanian Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with i.e. data on the national emission inventory related to road transport
www.afm.ro; webpage of the Romanian Environmental Fund Administration with information on the funding system for car fleet renewable
www.icim.ro; webpage of the National Institute for Environmental Research and Development managing the air emission assessment
www.anrmap.ro/indexen.php, webpage of the national authority for regulating and monitoring public procurement
www.cnsc.ro; webpage of the Romanian National Council for Solving Complaints in Public Procurement
www.e-licitatie.ro; Romanian Electronic System for Public Procurement – ESPP with tenders i.e. for vehicle procurement
www.topten.info.ro; Romanian version of the top ten internet portal with clean vehicle ranking and further information on clean vehicle standards
www.fabricadebani.ro; Romanian commercial information portal including news on vehicle taxation and other fiscal issues relevant for clean vehicles