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Düsseldorf: Diesel driving bans instead of environmental lanes?

According to Mayor Keller, the environmental lanes that have been active for about two years cause congestion and emissions. Therefore, he is abolishing the lanes - making diesel driving bans very likely.

There has been a lot of back and forth about the environmental lanes in Düsseldorf. In January 2019, the first lane was decided and activated in April. There are now three environmental lanes. They may be used by buses, bicycles, taxis, electrically powered vehicles and, in the meantime, also by carpools of three or more people. The regulation for carpools was abolished by the new road traffic regulations. Due to the Corona pandemic, the lanes were deactivated every now and then in the meantime.

The new mayor Stephan Keller is now putting an end to them altogether and abolishing them on 01 March 2021. The lanes caused congestion and thus more emissions, and were therefore harmful to the environment and health, according to Keller. Instead, he wants to introduce intelligent traffic light control that can measure and regulate traffic. The traffic lights should also be able to analyse air quality and react accordingly so that air limits are no longer exceeded. In addition, bicycle lanes are to be improved and public transport expanded.

With this concept, Keller also wants to prevent the introduction of diesel driving bans. Düsseldorf is the only city in North Rhine-Westphalia that is still in dispute with the organisation Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) because it does not want to introduce a court-imposed diesel driving ban. If the concept of intelligent traffic light control is not immediately successful, the city will have no other option but to introduce diesel driving bans. At the time, the environmental lanes had been introduced as a quick remedy against excessively high nitrogen dioxide levels and were just able to prevent a diesel driving ban.

As in more and more cities, Düsseldorf could soon be subject to an unpopular diesel driving ban. It remains to be seen whether this will affect the streets on which the environmental lanes were previously located, or even whether a larger area will be affected. You can find all the news on this topic here. Our Green-Zones app shows you all environmental and diesel driving ban zones at a glance.