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New low emission zones in France

France is getting serious and making life difficult for drivers. Since the end of August, Paris, like Lille and Grenoble before it, has had a 30 km/h speed limit in the city centre. In addition, there are more and more low emission zones in France.

In addition to the more than 35 environmental zones with temporary, weather-dependent driving bans, there are now five cities that have introduced a zone with permanent bans. The ZFE zones, in French Zone à faibles émissions, are Paris, Lyon, Grenoble, Strasbourg and Rouen in northern France, which since 1 June has refused entry to the city centre to vehicles without an environmental badge or with a 5 and 4 badge corresponding to Euro classes 2 and 3. There have also been tightening measures in Paris itself: In June 2021, for example, sticker 4 (Euro 3) was also banned. Since then, this sticker has had no place on the A86, the motorway ring that encircles the Paris metropolitan area and should not be confused with the Périphérique, the smaller motorway ring that encircles the city centre.

This month, in September 2021, two more low emission zones will be added: in Reims 150 km north of Paris and in Toulouse in the south of the republic. In Reims, vehicles with no sticker or sticker 5 will no longer be allowed to drive; in Toulouse, only vans and trucks driving without a sticker or with sticker 5 will be affected for the time being. In Reims, there is also a grace period until 1 January next year before fines become due. All vehicles except motorbikes with two, three or four wheels, so-called quads, are affected. Other zones are also planned, including in Lille, where it will be introduced from 1 January 2022. The introduction of the zones in Marseille, Montpellier and Nice has been delayed because of the Corona pandemic. However, all three cities are working to introduce the zones before the end of 2021. Gradually, and this is true in all French cities with permanent low emission zones, more sticker classes and vehicles will be banned over the next few years.