The Indian government has finally decided to implement automobile fuel efficiency labels and standards. It has been a year since the idea took off. Since then, a tussle was going on between ministries of heavy industries, surface transport, and power, as to who will setup the new norms.
Now the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) has directed the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) to formulate the norms and notify them under the Energy Conservation Act. BEE falls under the power ministry.
It will be the responsibility of the surface transport ministry to ensure the implementation of the fuel economy standards.
The BEE will develop the norms based on the mileage that petrol and diesel vehicles deliver. As the top office in the government has given the direction, BEE is expected to move fast to implement labelling of vehicles in the first phase of its strategy. These procedures, when converted into mandatory standards, are expected to force the hand of car manufacturers to focus on increasing the mileage of their car models over the coming years.
Meanwhile, the Road Transport Ministry held a meeting of its automotive emissions committee to discuss implementation of the norms. In the meeting, representatives of the automobile sector continued to demand the use of carbon dioxide as the basis for deciding the norms. Also, climate experts in the government have warned against making the norms too obscure for consumers to understand.