Adac calls for abandonment of environmental zones

From 1. January 2008, berlin, koln and hanover will be the first cities to introduce low emission zones. According to the automobile club, an expert report commissioned by the ADAC shows that their effect was zero. For this reason, ADAC vice president for transport, ulrich klaus becker, is calling on the municipalities concerned to forego this unjustified encroachment on people’s mobility.

Rather, in the view of ADAC, sensible measures must be taken. Passenger car traffic could also make a contribution, although its share of particulate matter pollution is very low at five percent. However, coughing up particulate filters would be much more effective than an environmental zone, as it would tackle the problem at its root. In addition, cities should make greater efforts to direct traffic more intelligently, for example with the help of "gruner wellen". The administrative burden created by the sticker ordinance is also to be criticized. Millions of cars would need a sticker in the future, even though they do not emit particulate matter. A considerable number of civil servants would have to be created for this purpose.

The report was prepared by professor detlev moller of the technical university of cottbus, but "on the possible influence of the environmental zone planned in berlin on air quality with regard to PM10 and nox". This relativizes its validity, because berlin is neither koln nor hannover. However, the results can in principle also be applied to environmental zones in other cities, according to an ADAC spokesman.

The reading of the report is worthwhile, especially since it gives interesting insights into measurement values and methods. At the beginning of his report, professor moller quotes historical literature, for example the physician ludwig formey from 1796: "the streets in berlin are wide, straight and spacious, and not only provide a pleasant sight for the eye, but also contribute a great deal to the health of the inhabitants, as the wind can sweep all around, renew the air and free it from vapors and impurities."As said, the report is worth reading without question – whether it is really transferable to other cities, would have to be proved.

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