- Title: Paris enforces car sticker system as smog covers city
- Date: 23rd January 2017
- Summary: GOVERNMENT WEBSITE SHOWING RANGE OF "CRIT'AIR" STICKERS
- Embargoed: 6th February 2017 12:13
- Keywords: Pollution France Paris vignette stickers smog
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE
- City: PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Topics: Pollution,Environment
- Reuters ID: LVA00260AXGLJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Paris introduced a new traffic restriction scheme using colour-coded stickers on Monday (January 23) in a bid to improve air quality after the French capital has faced a series of spikes in pollution levels.
Large parts of France experienced high levels of ultrafine and health-harming particles emitted by road traffic and in particular diesel engines.
Paris became the first French city to launch last week the "Crit'Air" sticker system that requires all cars to have a colour-coded sticker indicating their age and pollution level.
The stickers allow police to control which vehicles can circulate in the city centre.
Up until now, Paris had banned cars from circulation based on whether their license plates ended with odd or even numbers.
But authorities hope this new scheme will allow them to adapt restrictions to air pollution threats.
Each driver needs to order their sticker online. It categorises their vehicle according to its age, the emissions it produces and the energy source it uses. The idea is that the less polluting a vehicle, the more freedom a driver will have in circulating in the French capital.
Police in the south of Paris were stopping drivers on Monday, mainly to inform them about the new scheme.
"Some drivers haven't been able to get the sticker but they have certificates saying they've ordered their sticker. So we have been lenient towards drivers this morning," a policeman, who did not want to disclose his name, said on Place d'Italie square.
"I didn't know about this new scheme. So I've just discovered it, I know I need to buy a sticker, but in any case I'm allowed to drive today with my car so I'm fine today, but I didn't know about this," driver Marlene said.
France has faced several episodes of high pollution levels in recent years.
French health authorities ask school children to stay indoors and for individuals to abstain from any physical outdoor activities during spikes.
"I can really feel the pollution. I have young children and I can see it on their skin and hair, it's visible, and I think it's such a shame that in Paris, which we call the City of Lights, we're not able to fix this problem, it's beyond my understanding," Parisian Marie said.
"I never cough but today I've had coughing fits, I have a runny nose, it's really not nice," passer-by Henriette Robine said.
Paris air watchdog AirParif extended their high pollution warning until at least Tuesday (January 24).
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