Seoul announced plans on 1 August to withdraw diesel cars from all public sector and mass transit fleets by 2025, according to Yonhap News Agency, from “public cars used in cities, districts and subsidiaries to city buses, taxis, airport buses, and city tour buses” requiring operating permits from Seoul.
This makes it the first municipality in the country to have a diesel vehicle exit policy that extends beyond official vehicles to include those used in licensed and licensed projects and that feature replacement plans for existing diesel vehicles, according to the media.
The “No Diesel” initiative by the metropolitan government is aimed at replacing high-emission vehicles with zero-emission electric and hydrogen-powered ones, and is part of existing plans to speed up its transition to green mobility.
The announcement comes just over three weeks after Seoul unveiled details of the city’s Green New Deal, which will cost 2.6 trillion won (US$2.19 billion) by 2022 and covers, among other areas, proposed policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation, buildings, energy generation and waste management.
It includes a proposal to limit registrations of new vehicles to only electric and hydrogen from 2035.
“The goal is to turn all vehicles in Seoul into eco-friendly electric and hydrogen vehicles by 2050. We will open the era of green mobility beyond a pedestrian-friendly city,” the city said.
Seoul’s strategy to switch towards cleaner vehicles is in line with national plans announced mid-July: one of the features of South Korea’s 114.1 trillion won (US$ 94.6 billion) “New Deal” to help the country recover from the economic fallout of COVID-19 is an investment in electric vehicles and hydrogen cars.
According to Yonhap News Agency, diesel cars make up almost 65 per cent of the vehicles used by the government and public organizations, and comprise almost 10 per cent of Seoul’s public transport system.
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