germany diesel crisis nearly a billion euros extra for cleaner air
Last Updated : GMT 01:59:58
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Last Updated : GMT 01:59:58
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Germany diesel crisis: Nearly a billion euros extra for cleaner air

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Arab Today, arab today Germany diesel crisis: Nearly a billion euros extra for cleaner air

Further bans on older diesel-powered vehicles
Berlin - DPA

The German government is to provide nearly a billion euros of extra funding to improve air quality in cities plagued by pollution linked to diesel vehicle emissions, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday.

Current funding of 1 billion euros is being boosted to 1.5 billion euros (1.7 billion dollars), with a further 432 million euros for retrofitting smaller trucks.

Merkel made the announcement after meeting representatives of towns and cities in Berlin on Monday. One aim of the talks is to avoid further bans on older diesel-powered vehicles coming into force in urban areas where high pollutant levels have been recorded.

The debate over air quality in German cities came in the wake of the 2015 Volkswagen scandal, when the carmaker admitted it had installed software in diesel vehicles that cheated on emissions tests and showed the vehicles to be cleaner than they really were.

German cities are facing court-imposed bans on older diesel-powered vehicles, after environmentalists resorted to legal action to enforce European Union regulations on air quality with respect to nitrogen oxides and fine particles.

The federal government aims, through its cleaner air programme running from 2017 to 2020, to cut emissions from municipal vehicles, with the German automotive sector also making a financial contribution.

The private sector is to support purchases of electric vehicles in the municipal transport fleet, the construction of charge points, digitalization of traffic management to reduce congestion and retrofitting diesel buses with improved exhaust filters.

Last year, 65 towns and cities exceeded the upper limit of 40 micrograms of nitrogen dioxide per cubic metre of air, with 15 exceeding 50 micrograms of the toxic gas.

Merkel said that Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer and Environment Minister Svenja Schulze would convene another meeting with the municipalities before the parliamentary summer break next year.

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