The Mayor of Rome has revealed plans to ban diesel cars from travelling in parts of the city from 2024.
Speaking at the second annual Women4Climate conference in Mexico City yesterday (27 February), organised by the C40 Cities group, Virigina Raggi the Mayor of Rome, announced the policy proposal.
Rome has signed up to the C40 Fossil Fuel Street Declaration, which contains a pledge to reduce the number of polluting vehicles on city streets and transition away from vehicles powered by fossil fuels.
Other signatories include London, Seattle, Mexico City and Auckland, however Rome is the first to commit to a complete ban on diesel cars.
Coming into force in 2024, the ban would be enforced around the key tourist areas in the city, however it is yet known the extent to which this would apply apart from applying to ‘private’ cars only.
Addressing delegates during the conference, the Mayor said: â€œBy endorsing the principles of the fossil fuel free street declaration, Rome has decided to ban the use of diesel cars from its historical centre from 2024.â€
The plan has been announced shortly after Romeâ€™s government was threatened with legal action by the green groups ClientEarth and Greenpeace Italy, over actions being taken to address air pollution.
The two organisations claimed that the Lazio regional government has failed to come up with a plan to deal with nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and particulate matter pollution (PM10), which breach current EU air quality limits (see airqualitynews.com story).
In a further blow to manufacturers of diesel cars this week, Germanyâ€™s highest court ruled that cities do have the authority to ban diesel cars in order to tackle air pollution.
Whilst diesel cars are not solely responsible for air pollutants, some diesels, in particular those built prior to 2016 are known to emit particularly high volumes of nitrogen dioxide air pollution, which can be harmful to human health.