Paris and Le Smog

President Trump has thought it wise to roll back emissions standards for US cars. Across the pond, Europeans are realizing how important higher standards are.

Paris is a good example. We all love to love Paris. We don’t all love Parisian air pollution, caused mainly by its auto traffic. Paris air quality is among the lowest in Europe.

Paris has been trying to do something about this. Indeed, one might argue that Paris has to do something about this in order to retain its reputation as the world’s charm capital.  This image gets your attention

Image result for Eiffel Tower in smog

Yes, that is the Eiffel Towe on the left.

Traffic restrictions have indeed had a negative effect on commuting.   these restrictions were imposed before any alternatives were in place. Still …

It’s not yet clear if the closure of the lower quays has reduced pollution nearby; figures will be released next month. But, unless you’re a grumpy commuter trapped in traffic nearby, it feels nigh-on impossible to disagree with the city’s decision to close them. Walking the quayside at sunset, almost nothing seems more beautiful than the parade of grand honey-colored buildings lining the banks, or their wild cubist reflections on the wind-whipped river. The last of the evening sun floodlights the rooftops and a small group of young people are drinking beer and laughing, not so loudly that they disturb a nearby man daydreaming on the quayside, absent-mindedly poking the water with a stick. In ten years, a visitor will struggle to believe that cars were ever allowed to dominate this space.

Image result for Paris  quayside



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