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Brussels low emission zone ban extended from 1 January
A further 90,000 diesel vehicles will be banned from driving in Brussels from 1 January, as the region extends the criteria for its low emission zone (LEZ).
The LEZ ban, which was first introduced in 2018, will now be extended to cover the Euro 4 standard, meaning no diesel vehicles registered before January 2011 can travel within the Brussels region. This was the last generation of vehicles that were not fitted with particulate filters.
In June this year, there were still 90,000 Euro 4 vehicles registered in Belgium, of which 35,000 belonged to Brussels residents - including cars, minibuses and vans.
According to Brussels Environment, Euro 4 represents about 12% of all vehicles in circulation in the Brussels region - but it is estimated that they are responsible for half of all ultra-fine particles and 25% of nitrogen dioxide emissions.
As has been the case in previous years, each time a new category of vehicle was added to the LEZ ban, there will be a three-month awareness-raising period from January to March, when no fines will be issued.
From 1 April, anyone caught driving a banned diesel vehicle faces a fine of €350 - capped at a maximum of four fines per year. Some 300 number-plate scanning cameras are installed on the region's busiest roads, linked to the vehicle registration database.
The Brussels ring road is not covered by the LEZ ban - and neither are the access roads to the park-and-ride car parks at Stalle, Kraainem, Ceria and Erasmus.
Exemptions apply to vehicles used to transport people with disabilities, army vehicles and recognised "old-timer" classic cars more than 30 years old.
Owners of banned diesel vehicles can still use the roads eight times each year, by purchasing a €35 day pass. More details can be found on the official LEZ website.