As of January 1, 2020, the Barcelona City Council will introduce the permanent regulation for its Low Emission Zone. The regulation is based on the thresholds of the current European, state and regional directives, regulations and laws on improvement of the quality of the environment.

The Low Emission Zone is a protected area covering more than 95 square kilometres. Vehicles that do not have an emissions sticker from the Directorate-General of Traffic (DGT) cannot travel in this designated zone. The aim of the measure is to combat air pollution that comes from motor vehicles and thus safeguard people`s health.

Vehicles must not travel in this zone on working days from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Fines from 100 to 1.800 euros will be issued to those who do not display the DGT emissions sticker.

Those vehicles belonging to people with reduced mobility, emergency services and essential services (until the renewal of the vehicle) are exempted. A moratorium will also be established for commercial vehicles for transporting people and goods. This moratorium will be applied to vans, trucks, coaches and buses with no DGT emissions sticker. These vehicles may be driven until December 31, 2020 and will therefore have twelve months to adapt to this regulation.

There will be one-day permits for passenger cars, motorcycles and mopeds without a DGT emissions sticker for up to a maximum of 10 working days per year. These vehicles will have the obligation to register beforehand and request a permit. The one-day permit will cost 2 euros.

Likewise, the DGT has established a ranking for vehicles with the aim of positive discrimination for the most environmentally friendly vehicles. This ranking is intended to be an effective tool in municipal policies, both for traffic restriction during high atmospheric pollution episodes, and for the promotion of new technologies through tax advantages or related to mobility and the environment.

Public transport and bicycles are the alternatives to polluting vehicles. The Barcelona City Council wants to encourage the withdrawal of polluting vehicles with the option of a T-green pass. This is a free public transport pass lasting for a three-year term, intended for persons registered within the area of the Metropolitan Transport of Barcelona. In order to receive the pass, they must provide evidence of the withdrawal of their polluting vehicle and undertake not to acquire another one during the term of the T-green pass.

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