London donates 110 ‘scrap’ ULEZ vehicles for Ukrainian aid

May 21, 2024

Over 100 vehicles have been donated to Ukraine through London’s ultra-low emission zone (ULEZ) scrappage program. Twenty of those vehicles have already arrived in the war-torn country this weekend, and another thirteen are en route. Transportation is vital for saving lives during the war. Once Londoners are accepted to the Ulez scrappage scheme and donate […]

Brussels Airlines challenges Brussels Airport’s new permit

May 21, 2024

Brussels Airlines is going to the Council for Permit Disputes against the new environmental permit for Brussels Airport. According to the airline, European rules were not respected. Thirteen environmental organizations and residents’ associations are also taking the same step, following the lead of the Walloon government and Brussels Environment Minister Alain Maron (Ecolo). They say […]

High Health Council wants ban on night flights at Brussels Airport

May 08, 2024

The Belgian High Health Council is calling for a ban on night flights at Brussels Airport. This is the advisory body’s first recommendation of such a measure. According to the Council, at least 160,000 people living nearby are at increased risk of negative health effects, such as disturbed sleep, reduced lung function, and changes in […]

Belgian energy-intensive industry emissions down by 10.5%

May 06, 2024

CO2 emissions from major industries and aviation in Belgium fell by more than ten percent last year, the largest drop since the financial crisis. The figure is measured in CO2 equivalents, which convert the impact of all greenhouse gases together into the impact of CO2. The decrease was even more pronounced at the European level, […]

G7 countries reach ‘historical’ agreement to abandon coal by 2035

May 02, 2024

Energy ministers from the Group of Seven (G7) major democracies agreed on Tuesday to end the use of coal in power generation during the first half of the next decade. Still, they gave leeway to Germany and Japan, whose economies depend on the fuel. Germany has written into its legislation a final target to shut […]

Liège Airport gets new environmental permit

May 02, 2024

The Walloon government has granted Liège Airport a new environmental permit. The Council of State initially threatened to annul that. Still, strengthening the permit’s legal basis, including the limit of 55,000 authorized flights per year, remedied that shortcoming. At the end of February, the auditor at the State Council ordered the annulment of the license […]

14% of CARA fit-to-drive tests resulted in final ban in 2023

April 29, 2024

Last year, 5,317 Flemish people took a fit-to-drive test at the CARA center. Almost fourteen percent of them received negative driving advice, meaning that even with car adjustments or driver license restrictions, they could no longer participate safely in traffic. CARA, a subdivision of the traffic institute Vias, is the Test Center for Fitness to […]

Dieselgate: Continenal fined for 100 million euros

April 26, 2024

Automotive supplier Continental has agreed to a 100 million euro fine imposed by prosecutors for its involvement in the notorious dieselgate emissions scandal. The fine was due to a “negligent breach of supervisory duties”, meaning the company undertook too little to inspect responsibility and managers for the supply of engine control units and related software […]

Accidents involving e-bikes almost as bad as those involving motorcyclists

April 24, 2024

E-bikes are popular among the elderly, and the number of Belgians buying them is rising. Still, you better use a helmet when you get on your e-bike. According to a recent study from Zurich, the injuries you can suffer in a fall or accident are even more comparable to those of motorcyclists rather than conventional […]

Flanders: vehicle tax reform lead to limited drop in CO2 emissions

April 23, 2024

According to a study by the Federal Planning Office, the 2012 reform of the Flemish vehicle registration tax (BIV) led to a faster but small decrease in CO2 emissions from new passenger cars in Flanders. The additional impact of the Flemish reform of the annual circulation tax in 2016 and the premium for emission-free cars, […]

Bike more popular than car in inner Paris

April 12, 2024

In Paris, the bicycle has overtaken the car as a means of transport and is now behind walking and public transport. According to a survey by the Paris Region Institute (IPR), conducted at the request of some 15 public and private institutions, Parisians use bicycles more, chosen for 11,2% of intramural trips, than cars, with […]

Stricter EU CO2 standards for buses and trucks

April 12, 2024

The European Parliament has approved stricter CO2 standards for buses and trucks. This includes the requirement that all new buses should be emission-free by 2035 and almost all new trucks by 2040. The European Council still must give the green light, but this is considered a formality. A complete ban on combustion engines for lorries […]

Brussels LEZ tightening under discussion again

April 05, 2024

The French-speaking Brussels socialist party PS wants the ban on diesel vehicles with emission class Euro 5, which will apply from January 2025, to be postponed for two years. The socio-liberal DéFI also wants a review of the low-emission zone (LEZ) rules. Energia, the former Belgian Petroleum Federation, in turn, wants the rules around the […]

EU recognizes cycling as key element in its mobility strategy

April 04, 2024

The European Union wants to work on improving cycling infrastructure among its member states and wants to make (electric) cycling more attractive. This is stated in the “European Declaration on the Use of Bicycles,” signed by the EU’s three central legislative institutions on Wednesday. “Cycling has numerous benefits: it reduces pollution and traffic congestion and […]

Opposing reactions to new permit for Brussels Airport

April 02, 2024

The granting of Brussels Airport Company’s new environmental permit is provoking opposed reactions. According to the citizen forum Burgerforum Luchthavenregio, the Flemish government has let down the residents of the surrounding municipalities around the airport. The Federal Ombudsman also feels that health and pollution have not been sufficiently considered. The Flemish liberal political party Open […]

Touring urges Brussels to ‘ease’ LEZ exclusion of 850,000 vehicles

March 26, 2024

Mobility organization Touring is calling for a moratorium on the Euro 5 ban in Brussels from January 2025. Tightening the allowable emissions standard in the Brussels Region would exclude 850,000 vehicles, including 700,000 passenger cars and 150,000 vans. Touring says a moratorium would encourage a smoother transition to EVs, pending a more diverse and affordable […]

Sixth bike fair Bike Brussels is coming up

March 13, 2024

From Friday 22 to Sunday 24 March, Tour & Taxis will host the sixth edition of the bike fair Bike Brussels. In the event location’s ‘Gare Maritime, ‘ more than 150 exhibitors will guide cycling enthusiasts through the latest innovations in the sector, recent accessories that can come in handy for a trip on two […]

Flanders sees bike paths in good condition increase slightly

February 26, 2024

The number of bicycle paths along regional roads in Flanders that are in excellent or decent condition has increased slightly, by 3,3%, to 63,8%. This is according to the new bicycle paths report of the Agency for Roads and Traffic (Agentschap Wegen en Verkeer, AWV), which gives a picture of about 7,000 km of bicycle […]

CD&V considers phasing out low-emission zones

February 21, 2024

Flanders’ Christian Democratic party CD&V wants to phase out the low-emission zones. That is what party chairman Sammy Mahdi said during a debate at the Automotive eMotion Summit in the Skyhall, the former departure hall of Brussels Airport. According to Mahdi, these zones have proven successful in reducing the amount of air pollution. However, diesel […]

UK sees increased wood burning offset cuts in car pollution data

February 15, 2024

Official figures in the UK from the Environment Department (Defra) show that the increase in wood burners in homes and the use of biomass in industry has offset cuts in pollution from cars. Statistics reveal that polluting particulate matter (PM), a variety of small and toxic substances that can enter the bloodstream and severely impact […]

The Hague to introduce zero-emission zone for trucks and vans

January 02, 2024

From January 1st, 2025, the city center of The Hague will become a zero-emission zone. This means that vans and trucks driving in this area have to be emission-free – electric or running on hydrogen. The measure should improve air quality and reduce noise pollution, nitrogen deposition, and CO2 emissions in the city. The same […]

Cummins gets huge fine for selling emission fraud devices

December 29, 2023

American powertrain manufacturer Cummins has to pay almost $1,7 billion as a fine for selling devices that can bypass emissions sensors. The US Department of Justice sees this as a direct violation of the Clean Air Act and has imposed a fine, which is the second-largest in the history of the Act, which was installed […]

Air quality in four of Belgium’s biggest cities best in 15 years

December 28, 2023

In 2023, the air quality significantly improved in Belgium’s biggest cities (Antwerp, Brussels, Ghent, and Charleroi). According to figures from the Interregional Cell for the Environment (Ircel), Belgium is well on its way to achieving the recommended value of the World Health Organization (WHO). It showed the lowest nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter emissions in […]

Lithium in Rhine poses risks to Dutch and German drinking water

December 27, 2023

Royal HaskoningDHV, a global consulting engineering company, has reported that the lithium levels in the river Rhine near Lobith, in the Dutch province of Gelderland, are already higher than the risk limit. Users of Rhine and Meuse water may now or in the future suffer from higher lithium levels. The lithium concentrations in river water […]

Antwerp relaxes LEZ measures

December 20, 2023

The city of Antwerp will adjust its low-emission zone (LEZ) regulations and postpone the next tightening of the standards from 2025 to 2026. The city will also take additional social measures and increase the number of day passes per year (from 8 to 12). By relaxing the rules, diesel cars with Euro 5 standard (or […]

Belgian government to define ban on ‘laughing gas’

December 18, 2023

On Friday, the Belgian Federal Council of Ministers will consider the final details of a Royal Decree to ban nitrous oxide, the so-called ‘laughing gas’. The product’s sale, import, possession, transport, and purchase will be prohibited unless it concerns a medical, technical, or nutritional application. Nitrous oxide has become a popular drug among young people. […]

Scientists warn: ‘CO2 has stronger impact on global warming than expected’

December 08, 2023

The temperature on Earth is rising more rapidly than previously thought due to increased carbon dioxide (CO2) in the air. Current levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere have not been reached in 14 million years on Earth. This is what a group of scientists published on Thursday in the Science journal. The study results […]

Antwerp and Brussels LEZs improve air quality significantly

December 08, 2023

Since the Brussels Capital Region introduced a low-emission zone (LEZ) in 2018, there has been a 30% reduction in nitrogen dioxide along Brussels’ main roads. Brussels Environment has also observed similar and more significant reductions for other pollutants. Air quality in Antwerp has also improved significantly over the past decade. However, traffic remains the primary […]

Fluxys makes CO2 transport and storage deal with Germany

December 07, 2023

The Belgian gas system operator Fluxys has decided to partner with two German companies to develop cross-border  CO2 pipelines to transport and store CO2 in the North Sea. The companies announced the deal on Wednesday, during the Belgian state visit to Germany. Fluxys previously concluded an agreement with the German oil and gas company Wintershall […]

COP28: von der Leyen calls for global carbon tax

December 04, 2023

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen called for a global carbon tax during an event on carbon markets at the UN Climate Summit COP28 in Dubai on Friday. “Putting a price on carbon is a way to reduce emissions while encouraging innovation and growth,” von der Leyen said. Today, only 23 percent of all […]

Toward 50 km/h on the Paris Ring Road

November 23, 2023

The speed limit on the Paris Ring Road will drop from 70 to 50 km/hour. Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo announced this during the presentation of the capital’s new 2024-2030 climate plan. Moreover, a lane on the ring road will be reserved only for taxis, public transport, and carpooling. The new speed limit on the périphérique […]

Belgian pedestrians rate infrastructure a score of 10,4 out of 20

November 13, 2023

Belgian pedestrians are far from satisfied with the walkability of their municipality. The average result is 10,4 out of 20 when asked to assign a score. The figures come from the first Belgian Pedestrian Barometer, published by Tous à Pied, Pedestrian Movement, and Walk this Sunday.Brussels. The participants were invited to respond to various statements, […]

‘Tyre Extinguishers’ deflate more than 200 SUVs in four countries

October 18, 2023

Guerrilla climate activists Tyre Extinguishers deflated tires of 55 SUVs in Ghent during the night from Monday to Tuesday. This was a coordinated action, as that same night activists also struck in cities in Germany, the Czech Republic, and Latvia – a first. In total, the tires of more than 200 SUVs were deflated. The […]

Out! Stockholm bans gasoline and diesel cars as of 2025

October 12, 2023

It all started with one street three years ago. But by 2025, the low-emission zone in Stockholm that will ban all vehicles on gasoline and diesel will expand to twenty living zones and cover 180 000 square meters in the heart of the Swedish capital. The ruling parties call it one of the most ambitious […]

Tesla Berlin factory workers demand better working conditions

October 10, 2023

More than a thousand employees of Tesla’s Brandenburg factory, near Berlin, are asking for better working conditions. Labor union IG Metall says that many employees complain about short production cycles, excessive production targets, and staff shortages. It’s not the first time that Tesla’s German factory is in the news, and not only for appalling work […]

Brussels and Paris want revision of EU exhaust standards

October 10, 2023

Nearly 10 major European cities, including Paris, Brussels, and Rome, have petitioned the European Parliament, demanding stricter standards for air quality and exhaust emissions. The 27 EU member states approved in September a watered-down regulation. This has yet to be negotiated with the European Parliament, which has not yet determined its position. The 27 do […]

Gilkinet wants independent control of noise pollution Brussels Airport

October 09, 2023

The Federal Minister of Mobility, Georges Gilkinet (Ecolo), has a preliminary draft ready for a framework law to provide a legal basis for all decisions regarding the operation of Brussels Airport. According to the minister, the text is essential to avoid new legal proceedings over noise pollution, in which the State sometimes has to pay […]

Belgium increases bicycle allowance for commuters

October 02, 2023

The federal government will increase the bicycle allowance for those who commute by bicycle from 0,27 euros to 0,35 euros per kilometer. In addition to the increase, there will be an annual ceiling for the tax exemption of 2 500 euros per year. According to figures from HR service provider SD Worx, almost one in […]

Fossil companies continue to invest in polluting activities

September 26, 2023

Despite climate ambitions to phase out carbon emissions by 2050, fossil companies continue to invest in new oil pipelines and platforms, shale gas projects, and even coal mines. To finance these activities, they increasingly rely on the cooperation of the banks. That is what the newspaper De Tijd revealed on Tuesday, based on research from […]

Modal Shift Coalition pleads for sustainable mobility in Antwerp

September 25, 2023

Twenty-six Antwerp action groups have joined forces and launched an election memorandum on Friday about mobility in the province of Antwerp. The memorandum calls for a “catch-up” effort, including “substantial investments” in public transport and pedestrian and cycling facilities. According to the activists, the promised “modal shift” to at least 50% of journeys that must […]

Brussels Car-Free Sunday reduces NOx by 77 to 97%

September 20, 2023

The Car-Free Sunday in Brussels again positively impacted air quality and reduced noise pollution. So says the Brussels public service Brussels Environment. On the 23rd Car-Free Sunday, concentrations of nitrogen monoxide and dioxide dropped by 95 and 77%, respectively, compared to a normal Sunday. Readings were taken on Regent Avenue, a spot near Arts-Loi/Kunst-Wet where […]

Resistance grows now almost all of London is ultra-low-emission zone

August 29, 2023

As earlier announced, London is expanding its environmental zone. Almost all of London will become an ultra-low-emission zone (ULEZ) as of today. The measure is intended to tackle pollution, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and improve the air quality for residents and visitors. But not everybody is happy with the new ultra-low-emission zone because it will […]

Amsterdam installs ‘noise trap cameras’ to catch boisterous motorbikes

August 15, 2023

The city of Amsterdam has had enough of noisy cars and motorbikes and is taking measures to fight the noise nuisance. The city will introduce an experiment and install noise displays in particular spots in the city center. Later this month, sound meters and noise speed cameras will be added, and finally, noisemakers will be […]

London to expand LEZ again to improve air quality

July 31, 2023

London intends to expand its ultra-low-emission zone again and, according to the Court, is allowed to do so. In this zone, polluting cars – even with a foreign license plate – must pay a daily surcharge of about 14,50 euros (£12,50). A fine of up to £180 ( more than 200 euros) is imposed if […]

Gilkinet’s plan to ban night flights at Brussels Airport causes turbulence

July 17, 2023

Federal Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet (Ecolo) wants a total ban on night flights from 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. for Zaventem airport. As expected, many political parties, concerned companies, and interest groups reacted sharply and negatively to Gilkinet’s striking proposal to do away with the 16 000-night flights that currently take off from Brussels Airport. […]

Vias: ‘No support for mandatory bicycle helmet’

June 30, 2023

Primary school ‘De Wieken’ in Kinrooi (Limburg, Belgium) wants to make the bicycle helmet compulsory next school year. The reason for it is a recent accident in which a 10-year-old boy suffered a severe brain injury. The boy, who did not wear a helmet, was hit by a car while crossing the road and landed […]

Good Move: some 200 protesters against Brussels mobility plan

June 12, 2023

Some 200 people from ‘Non au plan Good Move’ protested the Brussels Good Move mobility plan in Anderlecht on Sunday. The local committees against the mobility plan from several Brussels municipalities are demanding a new regional mobility plan for Brussels. The committees recently succeeded in collecting the required 1 000 signatures with which to interpellate […]

European transport ministers want to make 2024 Year of the Bicycle

June 05, 2023

Seven European transport ministers want to make 2024 the year of cycling. They launched this call on World Cycling Day. The United Nations has declared the 3rd of June World Cycling Day in 2018 to draw attention to the benefits of bicycles. The seven mobility ministers are asking Europe to develop a genuine cycling policy. […]

Antwerp University Hospital (UZA) inaugurates first electric MUG in Belgium

May 31, 2023

The Antwerp University Hospital (UZA) is the first in Belgium to use a fully-electric ‘mobile urgency group’ (MUG) in the shape of a Mercedes EQV, which has been fully equipped to be as efficient as possible to work with and to save lives. The UZA was the first hospital to use a MUG service, where […]

AWSR: ‘10% of Walloon drive under influence of medication’

May 26, 2023

One out of ten (10%) Walloon car drivers admit having taken the wheel after taking medication that could have consequences on driving behavior. That is what a new study by the Walloon Agency for Road Safety (L’Agence Wallonne pour la Sécurité Routière, AWSR) revealed on Thursday. Each year, about 25 fatal road accidents are medicine […]

Brussels Airport back to profit and plans to slash 1.500 night flights

May 25, 2023

Brussels Airport Company, the operator of Zaventem airport, posted a net profit of 16 million euros last year. It is the first time in three years that it’s back in the black. “The profit in 2022 was still limited, but it does shed light at the end of the tunnel,” said airport chief Arnaud Feist. […]

EEA: ‘Air pollution kills 1.200 kids a year in Europe’

April 24, 2023

Every year, air pollution causes more than 1 200 premature deaths among minors in Europe. That is what the European Environmental Agency (EEA) states in its latest report. The report relates to about 30 countries on the continent, including the 27 member states of the European Union. The results show that the still high air […]

Schiphol to ban night flights and private jets

April 05, 2023

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, one of Europe’s largest air hubs, will, from 2025-2026, ban night flights and private jets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and noise pollution. Aircraft will be banned from taking off between midnight and 6 a.m. and will not be allowed to land before 5 a.m., the airport’s CEO Ruud Sondag said in […]

Brussels Airport: noise pollution takes toll on 220 000 residents

April 04, 2023

Planes at Brussels Airport cause strong annoyance to 220 000 residents. As a result, the cost of health damage would amount to more than 1 billion euros annually. This emerged from a new study by Bond Beter Leefmilieu (BBL), the Flemish federation for a better environment. The study, carried out by study agency ENV-ISA at […]

‘Average Flemish citizen dies 15 months earlier due to particulate matter’

March 01, 2023

Flemish citizens lose fifteen months of healthy life due to exposure to fine particles in the air. That is the disturbing conclusion of Statistiek Vlaanderen, the Flemish governmental agency network that develops statistics. Due to air pollution, in 2021, 153 healthy life years were lost (per 10 000 inhabitants) in the Flemish region, 10 000 […]

If your dog could choose, he’d prefer an EV over a diesel car

February 27, 2023

Like humans, dogs can suffer from car sickness when traveling, even for short distances. But if your dog had the choice, he’d prefer a smooth-driving electric vehicle over a noisy diesel car. British website CarGurus did the scientific test with the help of Daniel Mills, professor of Veterinary Behavioural Medicine, and his team at the […]

Vias: ‘8% drive while using sleeping pills or tranquilizers’

February 15, 2023

Almost one in seven young drivers drove under the influence of one or more drugs in the past month. Eight percent of Belgian motorists – 5% in Flanders and 8% in Wallonia – drive a car after using sleeping pills or tranquilizers at least once a month. In Brussels, the problem is even worse: 17% […]

Brussels test radars to measure traffic noise

February 15, 2023

The Brussels region is stepping up the fight against noise pollution. Environment Minister Alain Maron (Ecolo) presented a pilot project testing two noise radars on Tuesday. The aim is to provide Brussels residents with a pleasant and healthy noise environment. In 2019, the Brussels Region approved the plan. The plan’s objective is to reduce […]

‘43,7% more cycling commuters during rush hours in Brussels’

February 14, 2023

The number of cyclists traveling through Brussels during the morning rush hours almost doubled in 2022 compared to 2021. Cyclists seem to be moving increasingly safely in the city. The conclusions come from the Bicycle Observatory. Four times a year, the Bicycle Observatory organizes bicycle countings in the Belgian capital. The 104 hours of manual […]

Bicycle allowance for all employees in Belgium from May 1st

January 25, 2023

By May 1st at the latest, all workers in the private sector will be entitled to a bicycle allowance. In addition, trade unions and employer organizations concluded a supplementary collective agreement in the National Labour Council (NAR). The compensations, indexed annually, amount to 0,27 euros per km for those who regularly cycle to and from […]