Outrage As Amsterdam Aims To Ban Petrol Vehicles By 2030

Thu 2nd May 2019

The boats that take millions of tourists around Amsterdam’s famous canals will be banned after the Dutch city’s law makers announced that the city centre will be fossil fuel-free by 2030.

The move had angered many campaigners with a major motoring organisation claiming that the country’s infrastructure is not ready for a total ban on petrol cars and the move would punish the poor.

“In 2030, we expect about one third of cars to be electric. But there will also be a lot of people who won’t be able to afford them,” a spokesman from the RAI Vereniging trade association said.

“Many tens of thousands of families who have no money for an electric car will soon be left out in the cold. That will make Amsterdam a city of the rich.”

The ban on polluting vehicles will begin to be phased in from next year with diesel cars made before 2005 prohibited from the city centre, this will be followed by buses and coaches that emit exhaust fumes of any kind banned two years later and then by 2025 pleasure boats and motorbikes will be excluded.

“Pollution often is a silent killer and is one of the greatest health hazards in Amsterdam,” Sharon Dijksma, Amsterdam’s traffic chief, said. “We want cleaner air for all Amsterdam residents. Amsterdammers live an average of one year shorter due to dirty air. We will do everything we can to improve that situation.”

Though the Netherlands has a reputation of being a nation of cyclists, it is still home to some of Europe’s dirtiest cities, with both Amsterdam and Rotterdam regularly breaching pollution limits.