‘Stockholm Declaration’ proposes 30 kph limit in 140 countries

March 02, 2020

A speed limit of 30 km per hour should become ‘the new normal’. That is the conclusion of some traffic organizations, gathering during an international summit where ambitious targets were discussed. Flemish Minister of Mobility, Lydia Peeters (Open Vld), however, is hesitating about the measure. Traffic safety summit Most car drivers don’t like to limit […]

Netherlands: sales of e-bikes crushes all records

February 28, 2020

The e-bicycle is the goose that lays the golden eggs for the Dutch cycling sector. In 2019 alone, a record number of 420 000 new e-bikes were sold in the Netherlands. In the meantime, pedal-assisted bikes represent 70% of the total sales in bicycle shops. Belgium is the European front runner when it comes to […]

Dutch rail to offer shared cars

February 28, 2020

The Dutch railway company, NS (Nederlandse Spoorwegen), is going to provide shared cars in the train stations spread over the country. The cars will be blue and yellow, just like the shared bicycles NS already offers in many cities. This way, the vehicles will be recognizable as cars from NS. Today, NS is still busy […]

Railway manager Infrabel gets temporary female CEO

February 27, 2020

Ann Billiau will become the temporary CEO of railway manager Infrabel. She will run the company until the federal government indicates a successor to Luc Lallemand. This message was communicated by newspaper De Tijd on Tuesday. Successor for Luc Lallemand The board of directors of Infrabel has assigned Ann Billiau (50) to become the temporary […]

Does Norwegian constitution allow drilling oil in polar region?

February 27, 2020

Does the Norwegian constitution allow drilling for oil in the Barents Sea? That is the question that Greenpeace Norway and the climate youngsters of ‘Natur og Ungdom’ (Nature and Youth) want to have answered by the Norwegian Supreme Court. That is why they’ve taken the matter to the highest jurisdictional authority of the country. They […]

Panasonic ends joint production of solar panels with Tesla

February 27, 2020

The Japanese electronics concern, Panasonic, wants to bring its cooperation with electric car manufacturer Tesla to an end, some anonymous sources reported to the press agency, Bloomberg. Both companies already have a joint solar panel factory for two years now, but it still isn’t running on full capacity. Loss-making departments According to the sources, Panasonic […]

March 1st: Grand Duchy of Luxembourg offers free public transport

February 25, 2020

On Sunday, March 1st, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg will be the first country in the world to offer free public transport on its entire network. Users no longer have to pay for public transportation; they only have to be able to show an identification card to hop on a bus, train, or streetcar. The […]

German court grands Tesla permission to cut trees for giga-factory

February 24, 2020

Tesla has restarted the cutting of trees on a 92-hectare site where the first European plant of the electric car manufacturer will be built. Several environmental organizations had opposed the felling of trees, but the German judge swept away the objections. First European plant The American carmaker is in a hurry to get its colossal […]

Wallonia’s smart highway lights flash to warn for ghost-drivers

February 20, 2020

Wallonia recently introduced a smart road lighting network to make traffic safer. The new lights are equipped with sensors and cameras. They can analyze traffic and adapt the intensity of the lights to make situations safer. The lights will burn up in case of an accident, road works, or even in bad weather. Also, when […]

Coronavirus: ‘CO2 emissions in China down with one quarter’

February 20, 2020

The breakout of the coronavirus that is slowing down economic activities in China made CO2 emissions in the country go down with one quarter. That is the conclusion of a study by climate organization Carbon brief. The effect, however, would only be temporary. Drastic measures After the coronavirus broke out around the Chinese New Year […]

‘Fine particles in the air affect our brains’

February 19, 2020

Fine particles in the air are not only an unseen killer, but the polluted air also affects our mental capacities. Pollution can cause infections in the lungs, which in turn can lead to infections in our brains. Chess players More and more studies show that fine particles in the air can harm our intellectual capacities. […]

Nature’s extinction is costing a fortune

February 18, 2020

For the first time, the cost of damaging nature is calculated in money. Conclusion? The extinction of species and the erosion of natural habitat is extremely expensive. Without any urgent measures, the world economy will have to sacrifice thousands of billions of euros in the coming thirty years to save the planet. Macroeconomic costs The […]

Flanders plans 40 highway construction works in 2020

February 18, 2020

The Agency for Roads and Traffic (Agentschap Wegen en Verkeer, AWV) is planning 38 road construction works in Flanders in the coming year. A total of 81 kilometers of road surface needs to be restored, and a 20-km stretch will be provided with baffle boards. Nuisance The AWV announced the works on Monday during a […]

More than 600 young drivers fined for ignoring ‘refresher course’

February 17, 2020

On January 1st, 2019, Flemish authorities introduced a mandatory ‘return moment’ for all young candidate-drivers, six to nine months after their application for their final driver’s license. The reason for the measure was to reduce the high number of accidents – one in five – in which young drivers were involved. Up to €4 000 […]

CMB: ‘Hydrogen is fuel of the future’

February 17, 2020

The Belgian shipping company, CMB, is planning to have a first large container ship operational on hydrogen. “We have to do something about the climate,” the company says. Turning point Shipping is a polluting sector. More than 95% of the 60 000 vessels that transport 12 billion tons of goods overseas use polluting fuel oil. […]

World first: DEME’s sea drill for windmill foundations

February 13, 2020

DEME, the Belgian world leader specialized in dredging operations, has developed a special kind of sea drill, together with the German construction expert Herrenknacht. A world first. The company usually uses a giant hammer to anchor the foundations of an offshore wind farm into the sea-floor. For some locations, however, like the French wind farm […]

Flanders brushes aside climate experts’ advice

February 11, 2020

Flemish authorities are turning a deaf ear to the warnings of the climate experts that were selected to assist the Flemish government in working out a Climate and Energy Plan. Hardly one year ago, former Minister for the Environment, Koen Van den Heuvel (CD&V), decided to make up a team of scientific experts to support […]

‘Dutch prefer private lease over car-sharing’

February 06, 2020

Researchers of consultancy agency Automotive Insiders have discovered that it is difficult to seduce Dutch drivers by shared cars. Hardly 4% of the Dutch use platforms like Greenwheels, Car2Go, and Snappcar. These platforms experience more and more competition of companies that lease cars to private drivers. 500.000 users In the past decades, several concepts were […]

Ryanair sentenced by ASA for greenwashing

February 05, 2020

The British publicity watchdog, Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), condemns Ryanair for a campaign, in which the Irish budget airline had positioned itself in the market as “the company with the lowest emissions in Europe”. Lowest emissions? “Everybody knows Ryanair has the lowest tariffs,” the campaign said, “but did you know it’s also the airline with […]

Dutch to build first hydrogen-powered residential area

February 04, 2020

The municipality of Hoogeveen is going to build the first hydrogen-powered housing project in The Netherlands, called Van der Veen home zone. The project will consist of about a hundred houses, and the construction works will start by the end of 2020 to be ready by 2023. Hydrogen-heated homes The installation of technical hydrogen systems […]

Lack of charging points slows down car-sharing in Ghent

February 04, 2020

In 2015, Ghent Alderman for Mobility, Filip Watteeuw (Groen) launched the ambitious plan to have 20.000 shared cars by 2020. Today, five years later, his project apparently was too ambitious. In the meantime, there are more than enough cars, but the infrastructure is lagging. Ambitious goal In Ghent, the number of drivers willing to share […]

Vias: ‘Belgians prefer car to walking for short distances’

February 03, 2020

Belgian drivers are devoted to their cars, even for short distances. That is the conclusion of the mobility barometer of traffic safety institute Vias. The organization also launches a call “to cover short distances on foot or by bike”. “It’s a small effort, but it has a large effect, also on one’s health.” Mobility behavior […]

Ghent LEZ becomes ‘tourtist trap’ from February on

February 03, 2020

At the beginning of the year, the city of Ghent introduced a low-emission zone, but still tolerated offenders the first month. As of February 1st, drivers with old, polluting (diesel) cars will be fined. During the transition period, an average of 584 offenders got caught. More than 95% of Belgian drivers were in accordance with […]

Dutch rail: total ban of tobacco

January 31, 2020

The Dutch railway company, NS, will no longer sell tobacco products in its shops as of April 1st. At the same time, Prorail is preparing the removal of the 390 smoker’s posts at the gates. All train stations will be gradually made smoke-free, both companies announced on Thursday. ProRail, the Dutch railway network infrastructure manager, […]

Minister Peeters wants to scrap mandatory waiting time for cabs

January 30, 2020

Anyone ordering an Uber cab ride has to wait at least 15 minutes. This is the consequence of a measure that was introduced on January 1st. Today, the Flemish Minister for Mobility, Lydia Peeters (Open Vld), wants to get rid of the measure. Street and stand cabs The new taxi decree stipulates that a passenger […]

Traffic jams extend journeys with one-third

January 29, 2020

Seven days and six hours. That is the time commuters lost in the daily traffic jams in Brussels last year. Traffic congestion has become as bad as in London and Rome, and almost as bad as in Paris. The Flemish are massively stuck in traffic. Moreover, there’s no smart trick to escape traffic congestion. Congestion […]

‘Extremely difficult to keep nuclear power plants open after 2020’

January 28, 2020

“If we want to keep the existing nuclear power plants open after 2020, it is time for action,” warns the CEO of Electrabel, Philippe Van Troeye, in a press release, in which he presents the 2020 plans for the company. Environmental effects As of 2021, it will become very difficult to keep them open due […]

Increasingly fewer offenders of Antwerp LEZ

January 28, 2020

Last year, the city of Antwerp caught 20.774 Belgian drivers for entering the low-emission zone with an unauthorized vehicle. The number of infringers more than halved compared to the 42.455 the year before. In 2019, only 0,25% of all Belgian cars were offenders. Whether the number of foreign infringers has reduced is not clear. Fewer […]

Mechelen introduces first shared cargo e-bikes

January 27, 2020

The city of Mechelen is planning to introduce a shared cargo bike platform by the end of this year. The first two e-models were launched on Saturday for a test ride at the presentation of a regional vegetal garden on the median strip. Mobility solution The Cargoroo bikes, as they are called, will be parked […]

Is superfast 5G ‘super dangerous’ for human health?

January 27, 2020

Now that 5G is close to its breakthrough, people start to protest against it because of its dangerous radiation. But is it as dangerous as they claim? Let’s check the facts in five questions. What is 5G precisely? 5G is the logical successor of the existing 4G networks. “It allows wireless communication,” explains professor Guy […]

100 kph limit on Brussels ring-road will be introduced in 2020

January 24, 2020

The speed reduction from 120 km/hour to 100 km/hour on the Brussels ring-road will be introduced before the end of 2020. That is what the Minister of Mobility and Public Works, Lydia Peeters (Open Vld), announced in the Flemish Parliament on Thursday. Air quality The speed reduction is one of the 350 measures of the […]

Louvain ‘Abacus’ project to get company structure

January 23, 2020

The so-called ‘Abacus Project’ or ‘Counting Frame Project’ (Telraam in Dutch), an initiative of Transport & Mobility Louvain, Mobiel, and Waanz.in, wants to create its own company structure within two or three months. ‘Counting window’ A ‘counting frame’ or ‘counting window’ is a digitized system with sensors and a camera to measure traffic in real-time. […]

FlixBus breaks record with 3 million Belgian passengers

January 22, 2020

Last year, the German FlixBuses transported three million passengers in Belgium alone. An absolute record. The explanation for their popularity? “Traveling by Flixbus is easy and cheap,” users say. “When traveling by car traffic is congested, and the train trip is too expensive,” says Omar El Hassane, who paid ten euros for the two-hour bus […]

Dutch resign to traffic congestion

January 21, 2020

According to a new survey by the knowledge institute for mobility policy (Kennisinstituut voor Mobiliteitsbeleid, KiM), Dutch drivers no longer see traffic jams as a social problem. While 72% of the Dutch considered traffic congestion on highways unacceptable, the number decreased to 35% in 2019. Antisocial behavior Other nuisances like aggression, noise annoyance, air pollution, […]

‘More Belgians than Dutch commute by leased bike’

January 20, 2020

The Belgian bicycle show Velofollies that opened its doors on Friday for the public is drawing the attention of the Dutch. Especially the leased ‘company’ bike is an eye-catcher for our northern neighbors. ‘Bicycle country’ “Although The Netherlands has a reputation as ‘bicycle country’, more Belgians are commuting by a leased company bike,” said Ilse […]

Stint to be called Buszy on victims relatives’ request

January 17, 2020

Relatives of the dramatic Stint accident in Oss, in September 2018, have asked whether the vehicle can be rebaptized when it will hit the road again. Edwin Renzen, the builder of the Stint, has complied with this request, and the new ‘bolderkar’, as the Dutch call the vehicle, will be named ‘Buszy’. Since the accident, […]

French rail strikes give FlixBus a boost

January 17, 2020

In the past few weeks, the German long-distance coach company, FlixBus, transported 40% more passengers between Belgium and France due to the persistent rail strikes in France. The French railway company is on strike against the retirement plans of president Emmanuel Macron, and the German Flixbus is benefiting from the actions. Strike actions “Since December […]

Bruges replaces diesel tourist boats by electric fleet

January 17, 2020

On Wednesday, the city of Bruges has launched its first electric tourist boat. The ceremony took place near the Gruuthuse company along the Dijver watercourse. It is the first boat in a series of five that have to replace a fleet of diesel vessels. No emissions, no odors The electric boat is nine-meter-long and has […]

Flemish socialists doubt usefulness of LEZ

January 16, 2020

The cameras of the newly introduced low-emission zone in Ghent registered 5.072 offenders during the first week of January. They will not be fined yet; they’ll just get a warning. Fines of 150 euros will be imposed as of February. The introduction of the measure was announced last year. Transition period The high number of […]

University think tank includes nuclear in Belgian sustainable energy plan

January 15, 2020

Metaforum, the interdisciplinary think tank of the KU Louvain, has published its vision on sustainable and feasible energy and climate policy. The text ‘Sustainable Energy Provision for Belgium’ sides with the Paris climate agreement and the European Green Deal and works out how Belgium can contribute. Renewable energy The authors of the text took up […]

Velofollies: ‘More e-bikes cause more accidents on Belgian roads’

January 14, 2020

The number of speed pedelecs on the Belgian roads increased significantly in 2019. More and more people consider the fast-riding bikes an alternative for their second car. According to the service for vehicle registrations (Dienst voor Inschrijvingen Voertuigen, DIV), last year, 13.416 speed pedelecs were registered or 40% more than the year before (9.364). In […]

Dutch use Flitsmeister app to bypass 100 kph speed limit

January 13, 2020

Speed controls with mobile speed cameras have become useless in The Netherlands due to the popular app, Flitsmeister, that allows drivers to warn each other for speed controls. Last year, there were more controls but 10% fewer fines, according to an analysis of the Flitsmeister’s data. Hardly any fines anymore Public services are worried because […]

Utrecht to ban (most) cars from newest residential district

January 10, 2020

The city of Utrecht, together with Amsterdam, is determined to ban the car from their city centers. On Thursday, local authorities of Utrecht and several project developers signed an agreement for an experimental but ambitious housing project along the Merwede Channel. The project is meant to become the first (almost) car-free zone in the Netherlands. […]

Comparing prices of car sharing extremely difficult

January 09, 2020

Car sharing is a good idea, but how much does it cost? Until a few years ago, the situation was clear. If you needed a shared car, there was Cambio. Period. Meanwhile, however, the Flemish driver can choose between several tens of alternatives, each with their specific formula, says Jeffrey Matthijs of Autodelen.net, an independent […]

TLV: ‘JBC using private drivers for return delivery is illegal’

January 09, 2020

According to Transport and Logistic in Flanders (Transport en Logistiek Vlaanderen, TLV), the idea of the Belgian fashion chain, JBC, to have parcels returned by commuters is illegal. The professional association that represents 1.500 Flemish transport companies considers juridic actions when the fashion store continues its plans. On Tuesday, JBC announced it is going to […]

Elia: ‘Belgium produces more energy than it uses’

January 08, 2020

Last year, the total consumption of electricity in Belgium decreased by 3%. In 2019, consumption was 84,7 terawatt-hours or the lowest level since 2014. Older figures are not available. Decreasing consumption “We have seen a decline in the energy consumption for some years now,” says Elia spokeswoman, Marleen Vanhecke. “Especially the industry has improved its […]

New Brussels North bus station ‘hardly an improvement’

January 07, 2020

Passengers of public transport company De Lijn no longer need to wait at the dark and filthy bus stops of the Brussels North station. On Monday, the Flemish bus company inaugurated its new temporary bus station on the North Square next to the train station. Dark and filthy From now on, all departing buses – […]

Jupiler launches campaign ‘not to drink beer’

January 07, 2020

The Belgian brewer, AB Inbev, the producer of the famous Jupiler beer, launched a remarkable sensitizing campaign this week on radio and television. In the build-up to the Brussels Motor Show that is opening its door on Friday, the brewer introduced the slogan “Cars built with love, are to be used with care”. The text […]

Belgian XenomatiX’s lidar sensors ready for breakthrough

January 06, 2020

For the Belgian company XenomatiX, participating in the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas will be a significant start of an extraordinary year. As a Louvain spin-off of Imec, the company produces the so-called lidar sensors. Multi-beam approach Thanks to XenomatiX’ multi-beam approach – using several laser pulses at the same time – they […]

Cambio rounds cape of half a million rides

January 03, 2020

Last year, the car-sharing platform Cambio has registered 551.680 rides. That is an increase of 12,9% compared to 2018 (488.475 rides). In ten years’ time, the number of rides has increased annually by 16%. 41.500 members Also this year, the company expects a 10 to 15% growth of cars, members, and rides. Today, the organization […]

Mobco’s goal of replacing 20% of car km by e-scooter failed

January 02, 2020

Last year, the IT company Mobco in Dilbeek (Brussels, Belgium) offered its employees an original Christmas present: those who already drove a company car were given an e-scooter on top. The compact two-wheelers were part of a smart ‘combi mobility plan’, and were intended to stimulate the owners to use public transport more often. ‘The […]

Truck cartel: 3.200 transport companies file €500 million claim

December 28, 2017

More than 3.200 carriers in 9 European countries have pressed charges against a trust of truck manufacturers in München (Germany). Together they claim a compensation of at least 500 million euro. 2,9 billion euro fine Last year truck manufacturers MAN, Volvo/Renault, Daimler, Iveco and DAF already were imposed a 2,9 billion euro fine by the […]

Study: ‘Priority from right slows down traffic’

December 28, 2017

According to research with a driving simulator, executed by the Institute for Mobility (IMOB, Instituut voor MobiliteitI) and the Hasselt University, car drivers slow down at crossroads where they have to give priority to traffic from the right. “The faster we drive, the more risk there is at an accident and the heavier the material […]

Shanghai has to stop growing

December 27, 2017

On Monday Chinese government introduced a master-plan, imposing the biggest city of the country to stop growing. Today the most important economical and financial city has 24,2 million inhabitants and only has some space left for about 800.000 additional inhabitants the coming eighteen years. A maximum of 3.200 square kilometer may be built on by […]

Netherlands start tests with autonomous trains

December 27, 2017

The Netherlands will start tests with autonomous trains as from the beginning of 2018. The Dutch railroad company ProRail collaborates with several transporters and manufacturers. There will be several test routes: the Betuwe, a rail route for the transport of goods, the port of Rotterdam, the railroad in Groningen (Arriva), the Schiphol tunnel and maybe […]

Multi-modal route planner shows smartest way to Antwerp

December 26, 2017

Antwerp already had a ‘Slim naar Antwerpen’ (Smart to Antwerp) site, a website advising visitors how to reach the city the easiest way, but since Friday the site was enhanced with an intelligent multi-modal route planner. Users do not have to choose their mean(s) of transport, the route planner offers an overview of all possibilities: […]

Self-driving cars cannot cope with snow (yet)

December 26, 2017

It never snows in Silicon Valley and this worries the engineers of Waymo and Uber among others, pioneers of autonomous vehicles: they do not have enough experience of how a self-driving car  responds to whirling snowflakes. It sees it as hard objects you have to brake for. Light detection and ranging The sensors of those […]

Motorbike market down 9% in spite of traffic-jams

December 22, 2017

The sale of motorbikes during the last eleven months of the year has come down with 9%. Especially the scooter market suffers. Climate conditions are pointed out the guilty part. The sector is astonished, they expected the opposite because of the growing traffic-jams. It is clear for everybody that year after year Belgian car drivers […]

Tour operator offers traveling from one charging station to another

December 21, 2017

The Belgian-Dutch tour operator Pharos Reizen, specialized in car holidays, launches completely outlined car holidays with electric cars as from January 2018. A challenging idea because this also means that there have to be enough charging stations along the planned roads. Another consequence is that the trip and the daily distances have to be adapted […]

Ghent wants its own public transport

December 21, 2017

The city of Ghent wants to organize its own public transport. According to Alderman of Mobility Filip Watteeuw (Groen) Flemish public transport company De Lijn cannot cope with the actual mobility needs of the city. “The situation now is so dramatic that it is time for action”,Watteeuw says. Reformation plan Watteeuw thinks that De Lijn […]