Vias: ‘cycling avoids 1.294 premature deaths per year in Belgium’

September 26, 2022

Every year, bicycle use in Belgium avoids 1 294 premature deaths. At the same time, 137 717 tons of CO2 emissions are avoided because motorized traffic is replaced by bicycle trips. This is shown by a new study by road safety institute Vias. Moreover, also not insignificant when looking at the whole mobility cost picture: […]

‘E-bike 56% more popular in Belgium than two years ago’

September 09, 2022

Cycling is becoming more and more popular in Belgium. In all regions and among all age categories. And not only for recreational purposes. The use of the electric bike has increased by 56% since 2019. However, today, also traditional bikes score better than two years ago (from 41 to 45%). After an earlier survey in […]

Brussels Environment renews its Air Quality laboratory

September 08, 2022

In Auderghem yesterday, on the International Day of Clean Air, Brussels Minister for the Environment Alain Maron (Ecolo) officially opened the doors of the new Air Quality laboratory of Brussels Environment. The laboratory has been completely renovated to have the most accurate and reliable data possible to combat air pollution effectively, following the values and […]

Look out! One in five drivers say they cannot see properly

August 26, 2022

Good visibility is essential for participating safely in traffic. We all know that. Independent research commissioned by glasses brand Pearle Opticians shows that approximately 20% of motorists and electric cyclists say they cannot see clearly when driving, even though they wear glasses or lenses. In addition, a quarter of motorists who wear glasses or lenses […]

‘Cycling like the Dutch would reduce 700 tons of CO2 worldwide’

August 22, 2022

The world could achieve an annual CO2 emission reduction of almost 700 million tons – the equivalent of Canada’s annual emissions – if everybody used a bicycle for daily trips, as the Dutch do. That is the remarkable conclusion of a Danish study published by the Communications Earth and Environment journal. In the Netherlands, cycling […]

Hasselt ready to become one 20 kph residential area

July 28, 2022

This summer, the inner city of Hasselt will transform into a residential area with reduced traffic and a speed limit of 20 km/hour for cars and bicycles. Through traffic will be banned, but cyclists and pedestrians will be allowed to use the entire width of the public roads. In addition, parking places in the city […]

Brussels parliament to debate motorcycle noise nuisance

July 25, 2022

A Brussels resident had just obtained the 1 000 signatures needed to set up a participatory commission dedicated to the nuisances generated by motorized two-wheelers. “This shows that this is an important issue for the people of Brussels and that I am not the only one who suffers from these nuisances,” says initiator Marc Escudeiro […]

Number of LEZ in Europe up 40%

July 22, 2022

The number of low-emission zones (LEZs) in Europe has increased by 40% over the past three years. The statement comes from the European Clean Cities Campaign, a coalition of NGOs whose goal is to achieve emission-free mobility in major European cities by 2030. In Belgium, only Brussels has announced a complete phase-out of fossil fuels […]

Flanders rejects noise nuisance study about Brussels Airport

July 12, 2022

The Flemish government does not agree with the environmental impact statement about the noise nuisance of Brussels Airport. That is what the newspaper De Standaard wrote on Monday. The study was ordered in 2017 by then Minister of Mobility François Bellot (MR). The French consultancy agency Envisa finally suggested nine scenarios to spread the nuisance […]

Traxio: ‘speed pedelec registrations 26,2% up in half a year’

July 08, 2022

The number of newly registered speed pedelecs increased spectacularly in the year’s first six months. Between January and June, 8 219 units were sold, an increase of 26,2%, and 1 709 units more than during the same period last year. In June alone, 1 706 of the popular vehicles were sold, 43,7% more than last […]

Brussels government finalises agenda for exit of combustion engines

July 01, 2022

The Brussels Government has finalized the ‘Low-Emission Mobility Brussels’ roadmap with accompanying measures for gradually phasing out diesel and gasoline engines. In addition, the social support measures were also strengthened. The measures taken are also designed to respect the climate objectives of the Paris Agreement of the EU. 2030 is a turning point As previously […]

Walloon discos get ‘breathalyzer’ to avoid drunk driving

June 20, 2022

Six bars and discotheques will be equipped with interactive breath analyzer terminals, notably in Wavre, Braine-l’Alleud, and Waterloo. The so-called ‘breathalyzer project’ is a pilot experiment, with a budget of 120 000 euros, which will run in each Walloon province. The first started last Friday in Walloon Brabant. The Walloon Minister for Road Safety, Valérie […]

Technical inspection to tackle particle filter fraud from July 1st

June 16, 2022

From 1 July, the emission measurement for diesel cars in the Belgian annual technical inspection will be changed. From then on, diesel cars will have to pass a new test procedure to map out the emission of particulate matter in the exhaust gases. The new system counts the particles that are present, making it possible […]

Drunks will find it harder to use Bolt e-scooter

June 16, 2022

Whoever wants to use a shared e-scooter of Bolt by unlocking the QR code must take an alcohol test. The cognitive reaction test is included in Bolt’s app and is mandatory for everyone who wants to use the e-scooter on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights, between 7 p.m. and 5 a.m. The (micro)mobility operator, which […]

De Lijn campaign: ‘Join us on journey toward less CO2’

June 15, 2022

The Flemish public transport company De Lijn launched a new campaign on Tuesday to convince people to travel more by bus and tram. The campaign specifically focuses on sustainability and reducing CO2 emissions and does so under the slogan “Join us on the journey toward less CO2”. For the campaign, De Lijn’s electric buses, of […]

‘Fine particle pollution from tires 1.850 times higher than exhaust’

June 14, 2022

As emissions from internal combustion engines (ICE) are reduced due to stricter standards and electrification, other sources of pollution such as brake and tire dust are taking the lead. For example, rubber tires emitting while wearing fine particles into the air are thousands of times more polluting than tailpipe emissions from (recent) cars. New research […]

Picnic The Streets wants to have a word to say in Brussels’ future

June 13, 2022

Ten years ago, during Picnic The Streets, up to 3000 citizens claimed the public space on the Boulevard Anspach in the heart of Brussels for the first time to banish the car from the city center. On Sunday, in Cinema Palace, the organization looked back, but they looked ahead to the future. Afterward, another symbolic […]

Can you cope 30 days without your own car?

June 01, 2022

Not using your own car during the entire month of June, can you do it? This is the challenge that Prof. Cathy Macharis, head of the VUB research group Mobilise, is proposing to all of us as the ambassador of the ’30 Days Les Car’ campaign. A month without a car means more adventure and […]

France: EV’s for €100/month for the poorest citizens

May 27, 2022

The French government is working on a project to provide the poorest inhabitants with an electric car at a cost of 100 euros per month. The proposal, first proposed by the Socialist candidate and mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo and promised by newly elected president Emmanuel Macron during his first campaign speech on 17 March, […]

Flanders must pay €850 000 for failing Air Policy Plan

May 25, 2022

The Flemish government must pay environmental organization Greenpeace a penalty of 850 000 euros. The Air Policy Plan drawn up after a judgment by the Brussels Court of First Instance does not meet the requirements of that judgment, Greenpeace reports. “Flanders still does not have a sufficiently ambitious air action plan,” the organization denounces. No […]

German farmer brings Volkswagen to court over climate change

May 23, 2022

The district court of Detmold started a historic court trial against Volkswagen on Friday. The accusor is Ulf Allhoff-Cramer, a German organic farmer who claims that the German car giant is responsible for the demise of his farm, with his crops and animals suffering from global warming. Greenpeace supports the court case. Allhoff-Cramer is a […]

60% of Belgians want climate-neutrality by 2050

May 11, 2022

Climate change remains a ‘top of mind’ issue. Eight out of ten worry about climate change, and six out of ten Belgian citizens support the Belgian en European target to become climate neutral by 2050. However, only three out of ten feel that also families have to contribute. The figures come from the fifth national […]

‘E-scooter accidents often linked to alcohol and night driving’

April 27, 2022

In 84% of e-scooter accidents, the user is the only one involved, and the condition of the road, the light, and driving under the influence are often the cause. One-third of the victims were drunk. This is shown by a study on e-scooter accidents carried out for a year among patients admitted to the emergency […]

Belgium to ban smoking on rail platforms from 2023

April 21, 2022

From 1 January 2023, Belgium will ban smoking on station platforms of railway company NMBS/SNCB. On Wednesday, the Chamber’s Mobility Committee approved a bill proposed by the green fraction for this purpose. According to the authors, a similar measure is already in place in the Netherlands, with success. NMBS/SNCB supports the decision to make platforms […]

Oosterweel works halted again due to PFOS pollution

April 20, 2022

The Council of State has decided to stop the works of the Antwerp Oosterweel connection for a second time after receiving complaints from environmental organizations Bond Beter Leefmilieu (BBL) and Greenpeace. Both contest the restart of the earth-moving activities on the left bank of the river Scheldt. It’s the second time that the Council of […]

‘Thirty-day break of your car feels a lot better’

April 20, 2022

Thirty days without using your car. Quite a challenge. But is it feasible? The Belgian Network for Sustainable Mobility urges to give it a try. The goal of the ’30 Dagen Minder Wagen’ campaign is to change our travel habits and experiment (more) with more sustainable mobility solutions. The initiators hope to motivate people to […]

CARA declared more than 500 Flemish people unfit to drive

March 28, 2022

Driving suitability center CARA, a subdivision of the traffic institute Vias, has given negative advice to 543 persons in 2021. The number corresponds to 11,6% of the 4 660 files from the Flemish region that were handled. Almost half of the people whom CARA deemed fit for driving had to make one or more adjustments […]

Peeters kicks off new campaign to get people biking

March 21, 2022

Last weekend, Flemish Minister of Mobility, Lydia Peeters (Open Vld), and the Flemish Foundation for Traffic Science (Vlaamse Stichting Verkeerskunde, VSV) launched a new campaign to get more people on the bicycle. “Especially for short-distance trips,” she added. She gave the kick-off in Oudenaarde (East of Flanders). One of the figureheads of the campaign is […]

CurieuzenAir: ‘air quality in Brussels better than expected’

March 21, 2022

In general, the air quality in the Brussels region is better than expected. However, standards are still exceeded in the capital center and the vicinity of significant traffic axes. The results were obtained from CurieuzenAir, the most extensive air quality study of Brussels. As part of the CurieuzenAir project, air quality measurements were taken at 3 […]

Federal Ombudsman wants aerial LEZ at Brussels Airport

March 16, 2022

The noisiest and heaviest aircraft must be banned from Brussels Airport. That is what the Federal Ombudsman for the national airport, Philippe Touwaide, has stated at a press conference on Tuesday. “There are infringements every night, and we don’t pursue them,” Touwaide said, citing the case of noisy aircraft such as Boeing 777s at night […]

For first time Dutch buy more e-bikes than classic ones

March 11, 2022

Last year, the sales of bicycles in the Netherlands decreased significantly (-16%) due to continuous supply problems. The sales of e-bikes, however, increased. According to sector organization Bovag and RAI Association, more than half of all bicycles (52%) sold in 2021 were e-bikes. It’s the first time the e-bike seems to be more popular than […]

Segway KickScooter GT2 reaches 70 km/h

March 04, 2022

Scooter maker Segway moves into unchartered territory with the KickScooter GT2, a high-performance model not only delivering a range of 90 kilometers, but also a top speed of 70 km/hour. That’s three times the legal speed for e-scooters in Belgium. The GT2 is far from regular. Where an e-scooter usually rides on 8-inch wheels, the […]

UN sign convention to end global plastic pollution

March 03, 2022

On Wednesday, the United Nations Environmental Assembly (UNEA) has endorsed a worldwide resolution to end plastic pollution by the end of 2024. The convention is called ‘historical’ and is one of the greenest deals since the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015. “Today marks a triumph by planet earth over single-use plastics. This is the most […]

Brussels’ Sainctelette-IJzer area will get complete make-over

March 02, 2022

Brussels Mobility wants to reorganize the Sainctelette Square and the IJzer Square that are lying side by side. Both squares should become one open space with more room and comfort for cyclists, pedestrians, and public transport. About three years ago, the Sainctelette Square was ‘declared’ Brussels’ most dangerous junction. The actual reorganization plans should alter […]

New IPCC report: ‘Nature can’t keep up with global warming’

March 01, 2022

The impact of climate change is more severe than expected. All over the world. Even when global warming would stop at 1,5 degrees Celsius. That is the conclusion of the latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the United Nations. The climate experts say that extreme weather conditions, floodings, and forest […]

‘Most European cities not ready for zero-emission mobility’

February 25, 2022

Most of the most prominent Belgian cities will still have a long way before achieving ‘clean, active, and shared mobility’. That is the conclusion of a study by the Clean Cities Campaign, a coalition of European regions. The study criticized the cities according to five criteria: traffic safety, air quality, local authorities’ measures (like low-emission […]

Brussels to seal off city center from transit traffic

February 17, 2022

The Brussels Pentagon will become a low-traffic area as of 16 August. The city council has announced this. Less transit traffic should make the center more livable, accounting for no less than 42% of total traffic. The aim is to use loops, one-way streets, and traffic filters (which do not allow cars through) to ensure […]

‘Air quality in about 70 Brussels’ schools alarming’

February 11, 2022

A study by the Brussels non-profit organization De Luchtzoekers (‘the air seekers’), presented on Thursday, indicates that the air quality in Brussels’ schools is questionable. In all schools where scientists checked the air quality, the results exceeded the World Health Organization’s maximum threshold of 10 micrograms/m3/year of nitrogen dioxide. “These results are alarming,” Brussels Minister […]

One in five youngsters combines driving and drugs

January 25, 2022

Since the corona crisis, the number of young drivers (18-34 years old) using drugs while driving increased gradually. The percentage of those who admit driving while intoxicated – at least once a month – went up from 11% to 19%. Not only drugs are a problem in traffic. Also, the combination of driving and the […]

T&E survey: ‘76% support stricter EU car emission rules’

January 18, 2022

According to a YouGov survey, a large majority of people support stricter EU car emission rules for manufacturers to make cars as clean as possible. YouGov, commissioned by Transport & Environment (T&E), questioned more than 8 000 people from seven European countries: France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland, Roumania, and the Czech Republic. More than three-quarters […]

Brussels’Air scrap premium on hold due to automation

January 17, 2022

Since 1 January 2022, Euro 4 diesel vehicles, or the last generation of diesel vehicles without a particulate filter, have been banned from the Brussels Region due to the low emission zone (LEZ), at the risk of a fine of 350 euros. However, the planned support for the households who can – in exchange for […]

Dutch ‘invasion’ causes chockfull roads and trains in Belgium

December 29, 2021

The Dutch are in lockdown again. Shops, bars, and restaurants are closed, and the Dutch are massively crossing the borders for a day out in Belgium, despite calls of the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (VVD), the Dutch rail NS, and Antwerp governor Cathy Berx to stay home. As a consequence, traffic on roads and […]

Sick pilots force Lufthansa to cancel 33.000 flights

December 24, 2021

The German airline company Lufthansa has canceled several long-distance flights due to a shortage of pilots. Many pilots are ill and the company is forced to reschedule and even reduce the flights planned for January and February. Subsidiary company Brussels Airlines has had similar problems and also had to cancel one flight so far. “The […]

Flanders condemned again for slack air policy

December 15, 2021

The Court of Appeal in Brussels condemns the Flemish government for its failing air quality policy. It’s the final judgment in Greenpeace’s lawsuit against Flemish authorities, a case that started in 2017. As a consequence, the Flemish government has to submit an ambitious action plan and pay €750 000 damages. Greenpeace will use the money […]

Utrecht’s residents get subsidy to stop wood-burning

December 02, 2021

Residents of Utrecht (the Netherlands) can obtain subsidies for the removal of their wood-burning stoves and open fireplaces or disable them. Those who are willing to stop burning wood can get a subsidy of up to 2 000 euros. It’s a measure the city takes to reduce air pollution in residential areas. Many people love […]

Remote-sensing: ‘5% of diesel cars in Brussels emit 90% of particles’

November 23, 2021

Diesel cars in Brussels emit a disproportionate amount of polluting substances in the air. A small number of those cars are responsible for of large part of the air pollution in Brussels. That is the conclusion of a remote-sensing study by the Brussels Region. The study shows that it’s about time to remove the most […]

Coal power plants closed to fight New Delhi’s extreme air pollution

November 18, 2021

The Indian capital New Delhi has temporarily closed down six coal power plants in and around the city to fight against extreme air pollution. The metropolis is in ‘lockdown’. Public life is paralyzed, and schools and colleges are closed for an indefinite period of time. Civil servants have to telework, and non-essential vehicles are banned […]

EEA: Cleaner air could have saved 178 000 lives across EU

November 16, 2021

Air pollution is one of the most important environmental threats to human health, killing seven million people annually worldwide. However, figures are improving, states the European Environmental Agency (EEA) in a recent report ‘Health impacts of air pollution in Europe’. Air pollution – and especially the presence of fine particles in the air – caused […]

T&E: ‘Trucks still break EU emission limits in on-road testing’

November 08, 2021

On-road testing shows that even some of the newest trucks on Europe’s roads exceed the EU’s legal emission limits. When driving in towns or cities, emissions were particularly alarming, with highly toxic nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions at least doubling the legal limits. The testing was undertaken by the Technical University of Graz on behalf of […]

COP26: 100 countries to reduce 30% of methane emissions by 2030

November 03, 2021

More than a hundred countries have associated with an initiative of the European Union and the United States to reduce methane emissions by 30% by 2030. The Global Methane Pledge should keep global warming at least 0,2 degrees Celsius lower than expected. “Methane is an extremely harmful greenhouse gas, responsible for 30% of global warming […]

‘Brussels LEZ significantly reduces polluting emissions’

October 27, 2021

The low-emission zone (LEZ) is not missing its effect in Brussels. Since June 2018, the disappearance of the oldest diesel vehicles has reduced emissions of black carbon, a measure of soot concentration, by more than a third. The 2020 monitoring of Brussels Environment shows this. The LEZ was introduced in Brussels to improve air quality, […]

WMO: ‘record CO2 emissions in 2020 despite lockdowns’

October 26, 2021

Despite the paralyzing effects of the corona lockdowns, greenhouse gas emissions broke all records in 2020. That is the conclusion of the latest WMO (World Meteorological Organization) report, the Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, published on Monday. Corona turned the world upside down. People were forced to stay and work from home, airplanes were grounded, and factories […]

London expands ultra-low emission zone to be 18 times larger

October 26, 2021

On Monday, October 25th, the city of London has expanded its ultra-low emission zone (ULEZ). The ULEZ, introduced in 2019, was initially limited to the inner city but now is operative in a significantly expanded area. The new ULEZ now covers a quarter of London or eighteen times the size of the central London zone, […]

Mortality risk due to air pollution highest in Brussels’ deprived areas

October 21, 2021

The research group Interface Demography (ID) of Brussels’ university VUB has discovered that Brussels’ residents living in deprived neighborhoods have the highest mortality risk due to air pollution. The ‘Green & Quiet Brussels’ study showed that poor people’s risk of premature death is 27% higher and that high concentrations of particles are the most harmful. […]

Strasbourg Eurometropolis will roll out LEZ

October 18, 2021

The council of the Eurometropolis of Strasbourg (EMS) has voted to set up a low-emission zone (LEZ) with an expected timetable for the gradual banning of the most polluting vehicles for the Alsatian capital and the 32 surrounding communes. The LEZ is scheduled to come into force on 1 January 2022, with a so-called ‘training […]

Particulate filter: rather lenient threshold before being flunked

October 18, 2021

As of 1 July 2022, diesel cars will fail the Brussels technical inspection if their exhaust gases exceed 1 million particles per cm3. This threshold appears in the draft decree allowing the integration of the particle counter (‘PN meter’) in the technical control in the capital. This test will replace the opacity test for Brussels’ […]

VMM: ‘Flanders’ air quality improves but still affects health’

October 15, 2021

VMM, the Flemish institute for the environment, reports that the air quality in Flanders improves year after year. The health impact of polluted air, however, is still a factor that cannot be neglected. According to a new VMM report, traffic is still one of the main culprits. The positive news is that emissions in Flanders […]

IEA warns: ‘Energy transition goes too slow’

October 14, 2021

Two weeks before the start of the UN Climate Conference in Glasgow (COP26), the International Energy Agency (IEA) warns that the energy transition is not happening fast enough. The agency sees a new energy economy emerging, but the clean energy progress is still far too slow to reach net-zero by 2050. “If we don’t invest […]

Belgian government confirms -55% CO2 reduction by 2030

October 11, 2021

The Belgian federal government has confirmed its previously announced climate ambition to reduce CO2 emissions by -55% by 2030. All ministers of the De Croo government got specific climate roadmaps for their departments and every six months progress will be evaluated. The ministers gathered on Friday, it was the first time they saw each other […]

Plan Bureau: ‘Greenhouse gas levels 2% higher than in 2014’

October 08, 2021

According to a new report by the Federal Plan Bureau (FPB), greenhouse gas emissions in Belgium were 2% higher in 2019 than in 2014. Carbon dioxide (CO2) represented 86% of total greenhouse gas emissions in 2019. Greenhouse gas emissions decreased by 16% between 2008 and 2019. But, after a gradual decline until their lowest level […]