Stop that Car (In Germany anyway!)

If you are thinking of driving into the cities of Cologne, Berlin or Hanover make sure you have a sticker.

In an attempt to deal with city air pollution the three German cities have introduced a coloured sticker system. The small green, yellow or red circles indicate how polluting your car is with green being good and red less so. If you car is worse than red, then you will not be able to have a sticker and will be banned from entering the city! If you do you will receive 40 Euro fine. It seems there are about 1.7 million vehicles, which can’t achieve a sticker of any colour!

The aim, apart from cleaning up the city air (air pollution causes 75,000 premature deaths a year!), it will also encourage people to use public transport. As the public transport system is exceptional in Germany, and relatively economical to use (compared to the UK) this is probably a workable solution.

The system, which is to be extended to other cities later this year, includes vehicles registered outside Germany. Quite what happens if you are on holiday from other parts of Europe and happen to drive into one of these Cities is unclear. Ignorance of the law isn’t an option but how you find out about this (except by reading the EcoList), and get a sticker, is a little vague. It seems these cases will be treated with ‘leniency’!

[Via: Inhabitat]