Bavaria’s regional state government is in the dock for heavy atmospheric pollution. Diesel fumes particles are under the spotlight after an inhabitant of Munich took the state to court to try and get diesel vehicles banned unless fitted with filters. On Monday the city’s air went over its European Union-fixed particle limit for the 36th. time this year, breaking the annual 35 incidents threshold, the first German city to do so.
The Bavarian environmental campaigners compare Munich to Dusseldorf or Dortmund, where certain vehicles have been banned and the air is cleaner. Joachim Lorentz is Munich’s health and safety officer; “We face the same problems as all the other major cities in Europe. The transgressions in question were recorded on a Munich street that’s got the heaviest traffic in Germany”, he says.
Particle pollution is one third generated from diesel engines, one third from petrol, with the remaining third coming from industrial sources.
Berlin has already seen a similar legal action, and one in Stuttgart is expected shortly.