City officials in Oslo and Bergen are planning to make life even more difficult for motorists without electric cars. They’ve won state approval to ban cars fueled by gasoline or diesel in certain neighbourhoods and, by 2030, everywhere within the city limits.
It’s the latest extreme political initiative in the drive to make Oslo and Bergen “zero-emission” cities. Officials of the Greens Party in both cities were delighted Thursday when news broke on wire service NTB that the state would allow cities to impose such restrictions in its new climate plan due to be released on Friday.
Oslo intends to intitially ban all fossil-fueled personal cars and commercial vehicles within the downtown area by 2023 and eventually the entire city by 2030. Bergen has already had a pilot project within Neumannskvartalet but hasn’t yet determined where its fossil-free zones will be.
Climate and Environmental Minister Sveinung Rotevatn noted, however, that the state won’t allow bans on streets or roads that are part of the state highway system. He pointed to how the E39 highway, for example, runs through Bergen. Bans on it “would have dramatic consequences for a large area,” Rotevatn told NTB.