Germany’s first diesel driving ban in Hamburg is but “gesture politics” - commentary
Germany’s first diesel driving ban on two thoroughfares in Hamburg is no more than “gesture politics,” because numerous exceptions are granted to residents, suppliers, and many others, writes Martin Gropp in a commentary for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. The central challenge for many cities is not limiting nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, but rather preventing total traffic chaos. “Even if it is a horror scenario for many car owners: waving good-bye to some parts of motorised individual transport will be part of the solution,” writes Gropp. He argues that more public space will have to be dedicated to alternative means of transport, and that digitalisation will help reduce traffic caused by people trying to find parking spaces, and thereby ease congestion.
For background, read the factsheet Diesel driving bans in Germany – The Q&A and the dossier The energy transition and Germany’s transport sector.