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Kiel: desperate fight against driving bans

Diesel driving bans are a real nightmare for both politicians and diesel owners. In Kiel they are now investing enormous sums in air filters.

The port city on the Baltic Sea still does not want to admit defeat to the driving bans. As we already reported, Kiel recently announced the purchase of six more Purevento air filter systems with an order volume of over 300,000 €, which will be installed at prominent locations in the city. A new feature of this project is the funding provided by the state of Schleswig Holtstein. Two of these units were already installed on Tuesday, as Transport Minister Bernd Buchholz (FDP) explained to the Kieler Nachrichten newspaper: "I believe that constructive solutions should first be sought that take into account the mobility needs of many thousands of commuters, instead of imposing traffic bans straight away. The futuristic-looking road filter systems are part of a large package of measures designed to help the city avert diesel driving bans. According to Buchholz, air purifiers would make a "valuable contribution to clean air and against driving bans". That the German Environmental Aid Organisation (DUH) will see this in the same way after the first few weeks of operation, we will probably find out in a few weeks' time - after a one-week test phase, operation is to officially start in mid-October.
Whether these filter systems will bring the hoped-for blessing in the form of clean air is more than questionable, especially in areas like Kiel. Besides air pollution from road traffic, port cities have a completely different "boss": international shipping. The ocean liners anchor at docks during their entire stay in the ports, usually for several hours with running diesel engines to ensure the power supply on board.

So are the air filters in Kiel literally just a drop in the bucket - and primarily a waste of money?