Association of cities and municipalities: municipalities are suffering from the diesel crisis

Association of cities and municipalities: municipalities are suffering from the diesel crisis

Shortly before a new "diesel summit" with chancellor angela merkel on monday, the german association of cities and municipalities has criticized the course taken by the federal government.

"The declared goal of avoiding driving bans in any case could not be achieved," said uwe brandl, president of the german association of cities and municipalities, to the german press agency. Even about a year and a half after the first "diesel summit" at the chancellor’s office, municipalities are still facing rough challenges.

Cities and towns expected car manufacturers to be held more accountable than they have been in the past. "Mandatory hardware upgrades and real exchange bonuses worthy of the name for affected vehicle owners were important steps," said brandl. The CSU politician is also mayor of the city of abensberg. "The municipalities are not to blame for the diesel dilemma, but are currently having to bear the brunt of it. We will therefore certainly not let the manufacturers pass the buck to us."

From municipalities’ point of view, there were also still "deficits in the demand programs" for air pollution control. "A complex structure and a high mab of demand bureaucracy caused us to lose time unnecessarily, and municipalities could not start with the necessary mab."It is also important not to limit the demand to cities affected by limit value violations, but to include the surrounding area, says brandl. "This is also the only way to adequately capture the effects of commuter mobility. We will have to talk about this."

The federal government had launched a billion euro program for better air in the cities. It includes measures to improve public transport and the refurbishment of buses and other municipal vehicles. In many cities, pollutant limits are exceeded. One main cause is diesel emissions. Courts have ordered driving bans for older diesels in several cities, to be implemented in 2019. There are already road closures in hamburg.

Municipalities affected by driving bans face task of monitoring compliance, brandl said. Police authorities are responsible for monitoring traffic on the move. "The automated license plate comparison system proposed by the federal government to record entry bans on diesel vehicles is a practicable solution to ensure compliance with spatially limited driving bans."The license plates were checked against the vehicle register without data storage and violations were detected.

The data will not be stored. "Only violations of the driving ban will be recorded and penalized accordingly. Data protection concerns are unfounded, as there will be no basic data retention."

Brandl thus supported federal transport minister andreas scheuer (CSU), whose plans for a control of diesel driving bans have been massively criticized.

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