• Mar 18th 2008 at 5:29PM
  • 4
The City Council of Madrid, Spain, has unveiled plans to create a low-emissions zone in the city center which would ban polluting cars. This system is very similar to the ones implemented in several German cities and differs from Milan and London's option of an urban toll (or congestion charge).

If the measure gets the green light, only cars that accomplish the Euro III emission standards or higher would be allowed in the city center from 2010. Note that German cities require Euro IV and Diesel Particulate Filters for diesels. Residents might be exempted from this measure.

According to the City Council, this area will reduce NOx emissions by 47 percent, as well cutting particulate matter (under 10 micrometers) by 37 percent. Madrid's traffic accounts for more than 75 percent of NOx and particulate emissions in the city.

[Source: Europa Press via Econoticias]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      @ Zigster -

      the US decided to elevate air quality considerations above fuel economy decades ago because oil was cheap and much of it domestically produced. It is only recently that the flip side of these priorities has become evident.

      Most European countries are much more dependent on imported oil than the US and therefore, they cannot afford the luxury of de facto shutting down the market for diesel passenger cars. It is only now that affordable emissions technology has become available, allowing local governments to belatedly implement new EU air quality standards by discouraging the use of old diesels.
      • 7 Years Ago
      To Karl-Uwe:

      Madrid's policy is not so strange once you know several things: First of all, when the government changed hands in the early 90s their program included a reversion of previous plans of closing most of the smaller streets to traffic. Then, Madrid has been one of the European cities to invest more in roads and traffic (for instance, the M30 big dig).

      The city council also showed some interest in preserving it and proudly announced that it wasn't going to be a congestion charge (as other Spanish cities ruled by other political parties are thinking), and also that this wouldn't affect residents.

      To me, it seems a really insufficient measure - I lived in the city center of Madrid for one year and the worst part was traffic.
      • 7 Years Ago
      this makes me appreciate the goddamn USA!
      • 7 Years Ago
      seems rather strange to me.

      Spain have the best eco-rebate system in Europe, which is based on CO2 levels and is very similar to the system in France. In both countries (and the UK have announced similar measures) gas-guzzlers with high CO2 are attracting penalties of around 2500 euros at the time of purchase.

      London also has a system based on CO2 and I would have thought this a better course of action for Madrid. Other cities such as Milan restrict cars which are not Euro4 compliant from entering the city centre, so allowing Euro3 from 2010 seems way too little, way too late. If you said instead cars with 140gCO2/km or lower the expected results listed would be assured, and then some. I doubt that such a measure will get what they want, especially in 2010 terms....
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