People, Environment

Support for Creating Low Emission Traffic Zones

Support for Creating Low Emission Traffic ZonesSupport for Creating Low Emission Traffic Zones

The Department of Environment backs the implementation of the Low Emission Zone plan in Tehran, one of Iran’s most polluted cities.

Masoud Zandi, the head of National Climate Center at DOE, told reporters on Tuesday the department endorses the scheme, which was ratified in August by the High Council for Coordination of Urban Traffic, to replace the outdated and ineffective odd-even car commute plan, IRNA reported.

“As opposed to the odd-even plan, LEZ is less problematic and more effective,” he added.

He pointed to the failure of the odd-even plan to curb air pollution in more than 15 countries that tried the scheme and said, “Some may even buy two cars to circumvent the regulation.”

Saeed Motessadi, deputy for human habitats, said a final meeting to iron out the details of LEZ plan will be held on Sunday to ensure it is implemented without a problem.

He did not disclose who will be attending the meeting or when the plan is expected to go into effect, ISNA reported.

In low emission zones, vehicles with higher emissions are not allowed to enter. In such zones, polluting vehicles will have to pay more to enter.

Hundreds of LEZs now operate in Europe since Stockholm implemented the first in 1996. These are a more effective way of decreasing the contribution of traffic to air pollution.

LEZs and congestion charges, which encourage drivers to use public transport and shift to more efficient cars, are proven to reduce concentrations of dangerous particles and chemicals that cause millions of premature deaths in cities every year.