From 2031, diesel cars will no longer be allowed to enter the environmental zones of the Flemish cities of Antwerp and Ghent, and from 2035 no petrol cars will be allowed either. This means that the tightening of the environmental zones there will be somewhat weaker than announced a year ago.
Antwerp was the first Flemish city to introduce an environmental zone in 2017, followed by Ghent in 2020. In both cities, the environmental zones will be tightened considerably in the coming years, but more slowly than originally planned. According to the information at the time, the sale of cars and vans with combustion engines was to be gradually phased out in favour of electrically powered vehicles from 2029 onwards – now it’s about entry regulations for the low emission zones, not about the sale of vehicles.
The Flemish government says it is not deviating from its climate protection plans, but is reacting to the new circumstances due to the Corona pandemic, the energy crisis and delivery difficulties. “People now have to wait much longer for a new car, plus the inflation rate has gone up. That’s why we are giving drivers a little more time to adapt,” said Flemish Environment Minister Zuhal Demir.
In the Belgian capital Brussels, the plan remains for diesel cars to be banned from 2030 and petrol cars from 2035.
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