08 Feb 2019, 13:35
Benjamin Wehrmann

German mobility commission head says speed limit not best option to curb emissions

Zeit Online

The head of Germany’s mobility commission, Henning Kagermann, has said that a general speed limit would not be very effective in reducing transport emissions. In an interview with Zeit Online, Kagermann said introducing a speed limit on the German Autobahn, which is known for allowing cars to drive as fast as they can, had never been a proper proposal by the mobility commission and was “quite far down” on “a list of ideas”. Kagermann said mobility is the sector in the energy transition closest to people’s everyday life and changes in the sector would therefore be received more emotionally than elsewhere. According to the commission head, measures like digitalisation, a change of propulsion systems and fuels, traffic volume reduction and “more environmentally friendly means of transportation” rank high in the body’s list of ideas to reduce transport emissions.

Leaked information about the commission’s ideas had caused a public outcry in Germany, with transport minister Andreas Scheuer denouncing a speed limit and higher petrol prices as “detached from reality” and “running counter to common sense.” The mobility commission is expected to publish a report on its findings by the end of March.

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