Rome is banning diesel cars in its city centre by 2024 to protect both public health and thousands of years of heritage from the detrimental effects of air pollution.
Its world-famous monuments underwent a cleanup in readiness for turn-of-the-millennium celebrations in 2000, but are currently already showing signs of degradation from pollution.
Almost all air pollution in Rome can be attributed to vehicles.
About two-thirds of the 1.8 million new cars sold in Italy last year were diesel, according to industry figures.
The announcement comes a few days after a German court ruling paved the way for cities to ban the most polluting diesel vehicles from their roads.
The city of Geneva has also drawn up a plan to ban diesel cars on days that see high pollution levels, but this faces challenge from national lawmakers who favour a countrywide approach.
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