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Saturday, February 04 2023
Health & Lifestyle

Norway’s Capital to ban cars by 2019, for a greener future

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After Paris banned cars for a day in September to reduce the city’s carbon footprint and raise awareness, other cities seem to be following this sustainability measure as Oslo, Norway announced that they will be banning all private vehicles in its city center by the year 2019, reported Reuters.

In addition, the city will add 60 km of bicycle lanes by the same year as a bid to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and reduce car use by athird within the next 15 years. 2019 also happens to be the year of city re-elections.

Thechange was made possible after the city elected the leftist Labour Party September 2015, who teamed up with the Green Party and the Socialist Left.

Buses and trams will continue taking people to the city’s center, which has around 1,000 residents. However, by 2019, the 90,000 people who work in Oslo’s center will find themselvesbiking,walking, orusing public transportationto commute to work.

Vehicles transporting disabled people and bringing food tobusinesseswill still be allowed in the area, the three partiessaid in a joint statement. And to people who are less inclined to pedal or ride public transportation, the city will subsidize the cost of an electric bike.Everybody wins!

Across the city, the Labour Party aims to reduce car trafficby 20 percent by 2019and30 percent by 2030. Oslo will also give its public transportation system a “massive boost”, say elected officials.

Many shops are concerned that decreased traffic will hurt their businesses, as eleven of Oslo’s 57 shopping centers are located in the area affected by the ban. But Lan Marie Nguyen Berg, Oslo’s Green Party lead negotiator, believesthe change will benefit everyone. Shetold reporters:“We want to make it better for pedestrians, cyclists. It will be better for shops and everyone.”

“In 2030, there will still be people driving cars, but they must be zero-emissions,”Nguyen Berg said.

With thisnew plan, Norway is one step closer to reaching its 2020 goal oflowering greenhouse gas emissionsby 50% below its 1990 levels.

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