By Christophe Morel, USAG Benelux Public AffairsJanuary 29, 2019
CHIÈVRES, Belgium -- Many capitals in Europe will probably ban diesel between 2024 and 2030. At the moment, there is no diesel ban in Belgium and The Netherlands, but there are some restrictions.
In Belgium, Brussels has instituted a low emission zone, or LEZ, since Jan. 1, 2018. The objective is to prohibit the most polluting vehicles from the Brussels Capital Region. A transition period of nine months allowed drivers to adapt to the new system. Since October 2018, an administrative fine up to €350 was sent to drivers whose cars fail to meet the access criteria.
All 19 municipalities of the Brussels Capital Region are covered by the LEZ. The Ring (RO) is not affected. If you have to go to the center by using the metro, some streets will allow access to particular car parks: the parking Céria- Coovi, the Stalle car park and the Kraainem car park.
Every entrance of the LEZ is identified by road signs. As soon as drivers enter the zone, they must respect the access criteria. They are not allowed to drive if they have a Euro-1 Standard diesel vehicle or a vehicle without a Euro standard. The Euro standard is a European environmental standard and is indicated on the vehicle registration documents. If a vehicle does not the meet the emission standards, it will be annotated during the owner's annual CT inspection.
Vehicles older than four years must have a CT inspection. More information is at http://www.goca.be/. To find the Euro standard, use the "Chassis Tool" and input your chassis number (or vehicle identification number) at http://ecoscore.be.
The control of the access criteria is monitored by "smart cameras." These cameras will scan vehicle license plates to verify current CT inspections. Drivers will see the cameras shortly after the road signs.
Drivers have to respect the LEZ seven days a week, 24 hours a day, on the entire territory of the Brussels Capital Region. Vehicles registered abroad meeting the access criteria must be registered before entering the Brussels region. If you have a Euro-1 Standard diesel vehicle or a vehicle without a Euro standard, entry to the LEZ will always be possible using a paid-for day pass for a maximum of eight days per year.
To date, only the oldest diesel vehicles are affected, but the rules will change through 2025 and other vehicles, such as petrol or gasoline vehicles, will be affected. For more information, visit http://lez.brussels/.
In The Netherlands, the reduction of air pollution has been a priority for years. A coalition agreement signed in 2017 provides for all new cars marketed from 2030 to be "zero emission (gasoline and diesel)."
In Amsterdam, taxis and buses using diesel are prohibited from driving in the city. And for those who want do drive in the center with their own diesel car, they have to buy a pass (€600 for a year). Amsterdam also has a plan called "Clean Air for Amsterdam", and a "low emission" has been in effect since 2008.
In the future, the situation will be the same in Maastricht, Rotterdam and Utrecht.
Currently, Germany is the only country worldwide with diesel bans. The city of Stuttgart, for example, has already banned diesel cars with the emission standard 4/IV and lower. Depending on their pollution rates, Berlin, Bonn, Darmstadt, Essen, Frankfurt, Gelsenkirchen, Cologne and Mainz will follow later this year.
U.S. Army Garrison Bavaria Public Affairs provided a detailed explanation of the bans and what drivers need to know at https://www.bavariannews.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-diesel-bans/.