Paris, Athens, Madrid, and Mexico City will Ban all Diesel Fuels by 2025
Four world capital cities are taking up the torch of cutting down on air pollution by progressively reducing, and totally eliminating all diesel engines over the course of the next decade. Thier aim is to come up and promote other means of transportations through the city; things like green-powered public transport or the old forgotten art of walking and even cycling. Amazing, right? Anyway, the announcement was made at the C40 conference in Mexico.
Diesel fuel was highly marketed in the past by both governments and motor companies since it was said it released lower lever of CO2 and other harmful emissions. But as it turns out, however, this was nowhere near the actual case and was an elaborate ruse by car manufacturers to sell more cars by faking the results. In any case, diesel fuels have been linked to all sorts of nitrogen oxides and particle matter emissions, which can build up in dangerous quantities in urban areas.
These kinds of fine particles can pass into the bloodstream, thus contributing to serious heart and lung conditions, even death. Nitrogen oxides can and will further cause breathing problems. The WHO estimates that about 3 million people die each year as a direct result of these urban pollutants.
In some places, such as London, people have taken matters into their own hands. Environmental groups here have appealed to courts for clean air standards and regulations. Campaigners are also pushing mayor Sadiq Khan to join London to these other cities here on the list and phase out all diesel fuels by 2025.
“In the UK, London’s mayor is considering bolder action than his predecessor, proposing an expansion to the planned Ultra-Low Emission Zone. This is welcome but we want him to go further and faster,” said ClientEarth lawyer Alan Andrews.
“And it’s not just London that has this problem, we need a national network of clean air zones so that the problem is not simply pushed elsewhere.”
In order to prevent these problems and never have to deal with them ever again, the other mayors from Paris, Athens, Madrid and Mexico City have decided to exercise their power and completely phase out diesel fuels from their respective cities by 2025. They are thus committing to doing everything in their power to incentivize and make us of electric, hydrogen and hybrid vehicles.
“It is no secret that in Mexico City, we grapple with the twin problems of air pollution and traffic,” said the city’s mayor, Miguel Ángel Mancera.
“By expanding alternative transportation options like our Bus Rapid Transport and subway systems, while also investing in cycling infrastructure, we are working to ease congestion in our roadways and our lungs.”
Paris is already taking the initiative, with cars older than 1997 being banned from entering the city limits. The Champs-Élysées is closed to traffic once every month, and a 3-km long stretch on the Seine — once a two-lane motorway — has been recently pedestrianised. The city’s mayor, Anne Hidalgo, said that they will continue to “progressively ban the most polluting vehicles from the roads” of Paris.
“Our ambition is clear and we have started to roll it out: we want to ban diesel from our city, following the model of Tokyo, which has already done the same.”
Manuel Carmena, Madrid’s mayor, has spoken in support of cleaning city air saying it’s intimately tied with our efforts of tackling climate change. All in all, these four mayors seem to be set on cleaning the air, and they have their sights set on diesel fuels.
Which is a big deal, because if major cities go down this road, they will set a powerful precedent for others to follow suit. Carmakers, too, are likely to understand this and push for the development of hybrid and electric cars even more than before. Hopefully, this time somebody will double-check their results before the WHO has to issue another grisly statistic.