Curbing vehicle speed could cut 6.7 million tonnes of CO2 in this country

Germany is set to impose a speed limit for passenger cars and light commercial vehicles that could emit 6.7 million tonnes less CO2 into the environme
German government is mulling the plan to impose a speed restriction on its highways.
German government is mulling the plan to impose a speed restriction on its highways.

A new study has found that Germany alone could prevent the environment from absorbing around 6.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) by imposing a speed limit for passenger cars and light commercial vehicles. The country is mulling the idea of imposing this speed limit on its highways. Data from the Federal Environment Agency (UBA) reveals that a speed limit of 120 kilometres per hour on Germany's highways could cut the country's total CO2 emissions from passenger cars and light commercial vehicles significantly.

Currently, there are no speed restrictions on the highways in Germany. Hence, imposing such a restriction is a sensitive issue in the country. Interestingly, a previous study claimed that such a speed restriction strategy could curb CO2 emissions by around 2.6 million tonnes. However, the new study has found the curbing volume could be significantly higher.

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The strategy that the German government is mulling comes as part of the country's goal to become carbon neutral by 2045. The transport sector is considered the slowest in terms of curbing CO2 emissions. A Reuters report claims that to meet its 2022 greenhouse reduction target, the transport sector's emissions should not have exceeded 138.7 million tonnes of CO2-equivalents.

In 2021, the transport sector in Germany emitted some 148 million tonnes of CO2, missing its target by around three million tonnes. The German transport ministry reportedly claims that its programme will cut some 13 million tonnes in the coming years, compensating for 2021 missed target.

Generally, whenever a vehicle runs fast, it burns more fuel, causing more CO2 and other pollutant gas emissions into the environment. The slower the vehicle's speed is, the lower the emission level is.

First Published Date: 23 Jan 2023, 18:03 PM IST

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