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EU study: Infrastructure Charging and Internalisation

EU Study Infrastructure Charging and Internalisation

Transport activities give rise to environmental impacts and accidents. In contrast to the benefits, the costs of these effects are generally not borne by the transport users. The internalisation of external costs means making such effects part of the decision-making process of transport users.

Study Sustainable Transport Infrastructure Charging and Internalisation of Transport Externalities (June 2019)
This study assesses the extent to which the “user pays” and “polluter pays” principles are implemented in the EU countries and in other advanced economies. An Executive Summary in English  and French is available. It is completed by an external and independent consultant and does not represent any findings or recommendations on the part of the European Commission.

The study includes:

  • an update of the Handbook on external costs, which now also includes an analysis of the total and average external costs: HandbookAnnexes
  • an Overview of transport infrastructure expenditures and costs: Overview – Annexes
  • an overview on Transport taxes and charges in Europe: Report – Annexes
  • an assessment of the State of play of Internalisation in the European Transport Sector, comparing the transport related taxes and charges to the external and infrastructure costs: ReportAnnexes
  • The report Sustainable Transport Infrastructure Charging and Internalisation of Transport Externalities: Main Findings summarises the main results of the four reports mentioned above.

Update of the Handbook on external costs of transport (January 2014)
The 2014 Handbook on external costs of transport presented state of the art and best practice on external cost estimation by 2014. In comparison to the 2008 Handbook, it took into account new developments and progress in the following fields:

  • Large new databases on noise, accidents and emission factors,
  • New and updated models,
  • Updated estimates of important input parameters,
  • Research identifying additional health effects
  • Case studies and marginal cost calculations.

The 2014 Handbook also integrated infrastructure costs – previously tackled in a separate report – and provided updated and more detailed country and area specific estimates of marginal external cost estimates.

Handbook with estimates of external costs in the transport sector – February 2008

In 2008 the European Commission released its first handbook with estimates of external costs in the transport sector. The handbook, jointly prepared by several transport research institutes, summarises the state of the art best practices as regards the valuation of external costs. The Commission used this handbook to prepare a communication on a strategy to internalise the external costs for all modes of transport that was adopted in July 2008, as well as a proposal to revise the directive on the charging of heavy goods vehicles.