New anti-pollution windscreen sticker scheme now in operation in the French capital – you could face a fine if you drive straight into the city
If you’re planning a trip to Paris this year, don’t drive straight into the capital city or you could be hit with a fine!
The French capital has just launched its new anti-pollution windscreen sticker scheme for all vehicles, including those travelling from other countries.
All cars, lorries and scooters must now have a sticker on view in their windscreen showing how much they pollute. Any vehicles showing high pollution scores could be faced with a ban on entering Paris on high pollution days.
The capital has brought in the new measures after the city recorded a number of smog spikes during the past two months, which led to free public transport and traffic restrictions.
The anti-pollution stickers, known as ‘CRIT’Air’ (derived from the words criteria and air), will be handed out by the CRIT’Air anti-pollution agency.
The stickers will consist of six categories, ranging from the cleanest hydrogen-powered or electric vehicles to the dirtiest diesel ones.
Any vehicles not attached to any specific category will be banned from entering the city between 8am and 8pm on week days.
Such vehicles may include those registered before 1997, motorbikes and scooters from before June 1, 2000, and buses and trucks registered before 2001.
The stickers will be available to order online but the system is only in French at the moment. However, according to the French Ministry of the Environment, a separate section for foreign drivers will be available online from February.
The French Environment Minister, Ségolène Royal, says that around 2.5 million stickers have already been ordered, at a cost of €4 each (£3.50.)
Not having a sticker on the windscreen of your vehicle could cost you a fine of somewhere between €68-135. In the early stages of the scheme however, the police have been told to be more forgiving.
The new anti-pollution windscreen scheme is just part of a bigger plan to fight pollution by Paris’ Socialist Mayor, Anne Hidalgo, under the ministry’s Air Quality Action Plan.
The capital already has in place a ban on old-bangers and restrictions for heavy goods vehicles, plus an introduction to more pedestrian only streets, so with the new sticker scheme coming into force too, the whole of Paris will, in effect, become a controlled driving zone.
It’s estimated that around 600,000 vehicles every day drive around the capital city.
According to one study mentioned by the French Ministry of the Environment, around 48,000 people die each year from respiratory problems associated with air pollution.
Similar measures have already been implemented in 200 European towns and cities and in Berlin, which have been in force since 2008.
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