Free transportation for all as France aims to tackle air pollution

Paris is said to be facing its worst air pollution in ten years, and the government has taken daring steps to save lives. All public transaportation systems will now operate without charges.

However, some of the temporary measures taken to realize the national objective will make you wonder who the laws serve.

Media reports confirm that Paris residents have been allowed to use public transport systems without fees for the second day running.

However, some cars have been banned from using the roads while others were allowed.

One of the measures taken to curb the dangerous effects of air pollution was to create a schedule for drivers using their vehichle registration plate numbers, The Telegraph reported.

Authorities have said only drivers with odd-numbered registration plates can drive in the capital region on Wednesday. Drivers of even-numbered cars were given the same opportunity on Tuesday, but could now be fined up to €35 if they are caught behind the wheel. More than 1,700 motorists were fined for violations on Tuesday.

According to the regulations publicized on Wednesday by Airparif, the agency which measures pollution levels, Paris is suffering “the worst and most prolonged air pollution since 10 years.”

A statement from the mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, says “visible images of smog blanketing the capital were proof” that a drastic measure has to be taken, and this must start with a reduction in the number of vehicles within the city center.

“The air pollution peak is due to the combination of emissions from vehicles and from domestic wood fires as well as near windless conditions which means pollutants have not been dispersed,” the Airparif agency said.

The regulations say all odd-numbered cars, hybrid or electric vehicles as well as those carrying three or more people will be allowed to drive within Paris.

Foreign and emergency vehicles will not be affected by the laws.