Tolls "may be cut for green cars"

Driving on France’s autoroutes could get cheaper - if you drive a green car

Drivers of “clean vehicles” could pay less to drive on France’s autoroutes, a newspaper has claimed

DRIVERS of “clean vehicles” could soon pay less to drive on France’s autoroutes than those in more polluting vehicles, under plans reportedly being considered by the government.

Le Journal du Dimanche has reported that the government is considering a programme of variable tolls based on a vehicle’s emissions.

The weekly quoted a government source, who explained that a draft "green pricing" proposal would be "consistent with the public policy of sustainable development and development of electric vehicles”.

It would mean that electric or hybrid vehicles would would pay less to travel on the country’s motorways.

Transport secretary Alain Vidal told iTele yesterday, however, that the government had no intention of introducing “punitive” tolls for more polluting vehicles, such as diesel cars, but said that, “the State wishes there were incentives for hybrid and electric vehicles," as well as for people who use carpools.

As reported, environment minister Ségolène Royal said in September that tolls had increased faster than inflation since French highways were privatised in 2006.

Le Journal du Dimanche has suggested that the plans may be finalised this week, but said that “green pricing” could prove difficult to implement.

Photo: Ruben Holthuijsen

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