German Cities Consider Ban on Diesel Passenger Cars

By Christian Stampfer on 2 July 2016
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German diesel owners may yet face another challenge much greater than Volkswagen’s Dieselgate: German cities are considering banning diesel-powered vehicles.

The ban would come about because many metropolitan areas cannot meet the requirement for nitrogen oxide, or NOx, emissions and the Deutscher Städtetag, the German Association of Cities, is sounding the alarm. As a result, drivers in cities including Berlin, Hamburg, and Munich may find a ban in place.

The news was first reported in the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine.

Although the European Union imposes penalties if the limits on NOx emissions set by it are exceeded, these are regularly breached on German roads.

In April, German cities got the green light to ban older diesel-powered vehicles but this action will likely not be sufficient.

“This step is necessary as a stop gap until electric cars have a significant foothold in our towns, and diesel emissions really are what carmakers say they are: cleaner,” said Deputy Environment Minister Jochen Flasbarth at the time.

In the meantime, German cities are considering countermeasures such as improvements to public transportation systems and the addition of new bicycle paths.

If these actions fail to reduce the NOx levels, a ban of diesel vehicles would likely follow. German environmental protection organizations are already seeking an immediate ban on diesels.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)