Air pollution doubles on A13; local council goes to court

Air pollution has more than doubled on the A13 near the Rotterdam Overschie area since the speed limit was raised from 80kmh to 100kmh, according to the environment service DCMR.

The speed limit was increased in July 2012 as part of the government’s plan to raise the limit on 60% of the nation’s motorways. Transport minister Melanie Schulz van Haegen said at the time the higher limit would have a minimal effect on pollution and noise.

DCMR measurements show pollution is 2.5 times higher in the Overschie area since the speed went up.

Rotterdam council, environmental group Milieudefensie and local action groups say the minister ignored the health of those living near the motorway when she increased the speed limit.

They are going to court on Wednesday in an attempt to have the limit returned to 80kmh, reports Trouw.

It is not the first time local councils have protested at the higher speed limit, which they say increases pollution and inhibits them in reaching national targets on air quality.

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