Pollution problem in Large Cities

Pollution problem in Large Cities

Paris will cut the number of cars on the road

Associated Press
March 21, 2015 12:40 p.m. ET

Paris will cut the number of cars on the road in half beginning Monday and is making public transit free to combat a surge in pollution that has obscured even the Eiffel Tower under a smoggy haze.

The mayor’s office announced Saturday that only cars with odd-numbered plates will be permitted to drive Monday, as well as any electric or hybrid vehicles and any vehicles with more than three people. Public transit will be free, as will the electric car-sharing and bike sharing-programs

Pollution has risen in the Paris region since Wednesday, when the city briefly had the world’s dirtiest air, according to a monitoring company called Plume Labs.

Other cities in northern France affected by air pollution are also imposing various restrictions.

Al1 | 21 maart 2015

Anybody has ever tried to estimate cost of such smog in a Big city? Damage to small businesses, tourist attraction places, health cost?

And all that because some people got stuck with century old technology. Let's discuss smog anxiety. Shall we?

vperl | 21 maart 2015

Try China, then other third world countries, the US is trying, most of the rest of the world is not

Captain_Zap | 21 maart 2015

I worked in the urban terrestrial, aquatic and industrial pollution biz. There are big municipal budgets addressing the pollutant issues created by ICE and by industries that support ICE vehicles. Staggering amounts of money is being made by waste management and environmental remediation companies. As much as they whine about regulation, it's a golden goose.

spacevertex | 21 maart 2015
spacevertex | 21 maart 2015
spacevertex | 21 maart 2015
Al1 | 21 maart 2015

Just curious if there is a way to assign dollar number to cost of an average ICE car to local budgets. Not global warming, or war in Middle East, or disease that takes years to develop but money being spent today on items clearly associated to ICE cars.

spacevertex | 21 maart 2015
Al1 | 21 maart 2015

Thanks spacevertex.

Even though the worst pollution problems are in Asia, it is likely most money on environmental remediation is being spent in the US.

It would be counter intuitive to spend money on Electric Vehicles here to resolve pollution problem in Asia.

If however little money spent here can save big money spent here as well, that might be a different story.

I am talking mostly on local levels. People who decide number of taxi licenses and their mix, define building codes and parking rates. A lot of things can be done at local level. E.g. close downtown for cars, tax them out etc.

Al1 | 21 maart 2015

Look at Paris for instance.

"only cars with odd-numbered plates will be permitted to drive Monday as well as any electric or hybrid vehicles and any vehicles with more than three people".

spacevertex | 21 maart 2015

Your reading of the charts is incorrect.

If i have to simplify the discussion between Advanced economies and Emerging economies, then here is the argument.

Local pollution levels in emerging economies are due to the use of dirty fuels (Coal, Oil & others) however their overall impact even despite use such of such polluting practices are significantly lower, almost 1/10th of that of advanced economies, as the chart showcases.

Advanced economies have used dirty energy to propel growth and emerging economies are using this argument that why should they be penalised for the problems that are the cause by the advanced economies.
Advanced economies are also reluctant to share technologies with the emerging economies to help reduce pollution.
So emerging economies are continuing their practise of using dirty fuel as no other sustainable alternative is available.

As many experts in the energy industry have argued that the only way the world can migrate to a non fossil fuel economy is through the use of Nuclear power, however this is a sensitive subject not only from the standpoint of global security & nuclear proliferation but also due to the risks associated with Nuclear Power generation (Chernobyl, Fukushima and others), for eg. Citizens in California have outlawed nuclear altogether.

Electric cars and transportation is only a piece of global energy consumption accounting for only a 3rd of the total energy consumption.

Inference, not only advanced economies have to do more than the emerging economies to reduce their dependance on fossil fuel but also have to transfer technologies to aid emerging economies in migrating to cleaner energy.

spacevertex | 21 maart 2015
spacevertex | 21 maart 2015
Brian H | 21 maart 2015

Particulates and smoke etc. have different solutions (and consequences) from CO2 reduction, unless your preference is de-industrialization that prohibits all combustion (especially dung cook fires!). Oh, for the good ol' 1700s!

spacevertex | 21 maart 2015
spacevertex | 21 maart 2015

@ Brian H
Your comment though is correct your inference is misguided.

If the world migrates to non fossil fuel energy source thus helping the industry and sub sectors not having to burn dirty fuel, the problems of Smoke, smog and pollutants are automatically resolved.

Brian H | 22 maart 2015

Pixie dust; the "non-fossil" sources on offer so far are either vastly too expensive (proven by actual consumer costs wherever they are heavily used) or politically incorrect and artificially over-priced (nuclear). The pollution is controllable, proven in LA, etc.

But no-one is paying for the damage and wildlife slaughter caused by renewables, yet. That bill will come due.

spacevertex | 22 maart 2015

I couldn't agree more.

Dramsey | 22 maart 2015


"Citizens in California have outlawed nuclear altogether."

Um, no. No, they haven't. Where in the world did you see this?

spacevertex | 22 maart 2015

I had heard it in a conference somewhere that citizens by means of a referendum had outlawed setting up of new nuclear power plants, here are some links that back the statement.

Another risk nuclear poses is nuclear waste disposal practices and the nuclear waste disposal landfills, this gives the public jitters, hence new methodologies are being investigated. Many different players have different approaches and are advocating on how to tackle this issue.

spacevertex | 22 maart 2015
spacevertex | 22 maart 2015
Red Sage ca us | 23 maart 2015

There's nothing wrong with the air.

spacevertex | 23 maart 2015

Lol, we might just miss the smell of the polluted air in the distant future as much as the Model S owners miss the smell of fuel.

Grinnin'.VA | 23 maart 2015

@ Red Sage ca us | March 23, 2015

There's nothing wrong with the air.

Yes. It's just the contaminants in it.
Have you been to Bejing recently?

Red Sage ca us | 23 maart 2015

Next time, try sculpting.

jomei | 30 maart 2015

....commenting to the upper threads regarding pollution in the emerging countries: just one reason more to hurry up with the migration to EVs in US and Europe. EV's will then after a while also spread to the countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia (except China and Japan which are in the "leader group" themselves)