The Parisian emissions restrictions will become progressively stricter until 2020
Paris has unveiled radical plans to remove the most polluting vehicles from the centre of city.
A series of rolling restrictions are expected to begin this summer, when all coaches, buses and lorries registered before 30 September 2001 are banned from central Paris. However, they are expected to be able to use the Perpherique, the giant ring road that encircles the city centre.
Also on this summer’s hit list are cars registered before 31 December 1996 and vans and light trucks registered before 30 September 1997.
According to French media reports, these restrictions will become progressively tighter over the rest of this decade until 2020, when the only private vehicles allowed to drive in central Paris will be cars registered after 2011 and motorcycles registered after July 2015.
According to one report, Parisian mayor Anne Hidalgo was quoted as saying that while the older diesel cars were the most polluting, “even the filters in the latest models can’t get rid of the most dangerous fine particles”.
One pro-driver campaign group was quoted as saying as many as 'three million’ cars could be scrapped over the next five years. Paris has already had one mass demonstration by motorcyclists against the plans and another is expected.
These moves, however, could give a boost to France’s domestic car industry, especially if other French cities copy the Paris scheme. The French government has already suggested it could offer incentives of up to €10,000 (around £7435) to get the owners of older diesel vehicles to switch to electric cars such as the Renault Zoe.
Any new scrappage scheme or low-interest loans aimed at getting drivers out of older cars would also provide a boost for models with new-generation small-capacity turbo petrol engines. Peugeot, Citroen and Renault have all recently launched such down-sized petrol engines.
The French government is adding to the push against diesel by raising the tax on diesel fuel. Similar anti-diesel sentiments are being expressed in other European cities including London because of the health warnings about high levels of nitrogen oxides and fine particles, most of which are generated by diesel-powered vehicles.
However, Berlin was the first city to move against polluting older vehicles, banning them from the city centre nearly five years ago.
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