German cities to trial free public transport to cut pollution

In an effort to meet new pollution targets set by the EU, Germany will trial free public transport in five of its major cities - Bonn, Essen, Herrenberg, Reutlingen and Mannheim. The proposal will be tested by the end of this year at the latest. The initiative also said that the country could incentive the use of electric vehicles.

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Knowing German mentality, I am sure that the returns will more than make up for the expense. Think of a reduced health burden on the state, an increase in efficiency in transport, spin offs from the necessary innovation and so forth.

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7 minutes ago, Stephen said:

In an effort to meet new pollution targets set by the EU, Germany will trial free public transport in five of its major cities - Bonn, Essen, Herrenberg, Reutlingen and Mannheim. The proposal will be tested by the end of this year at the latest. The initiative also said that the country could incentive the use of electric vehicles.

it is huge, coming from car nation

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Great move forward. Getting people out of cars onto public transport, reduce pollution, reduce the imports of petroleum products, people are more active...Maybe will also reduce usage of dating agencies

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Germany has a massive public transport network that is reasonably priced and works. Germany can do this

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Why testing in two cities which do not even have major air pollution problem - like Bonn, Reutlingen and Mannheim, leaving out bigger cities like Stuttgart and Frankfurt where air pollution are real issues.

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Great idea. Definitely the best way to promote the use of public transport. 

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Maybe I'm wrong but I think it won't drastically increase the use of public transport. Most of people don't use public transport not because of the price but other reasons. 

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Well people are usually influenced by their financial advantages. Also public transport need to be stepped up to cope with the increased demand. 

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Yeah, I'm not feeling this. I doubt people don't take the bus or rail, which is fairly cheap anyway (is it inexpensive in Germany too?), because of the cost. Public transport is yucky and most of all, inconvenient. 

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Everyone wants green energy and carbon-saving measures--unless they are the ones required to make sacrifices, like giving up their car. This is not going to be as effective as they hope, I think. 

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19 hours ago, Vlad Kovalenko said:


Well people are usually influenced by their financial advantages. Also public transport need to be stepped up to cope with the increased demand. 

People are ALWAYS influenced by financial advantages. But is there really a great financial advantage here? How much money would this save someone from the current cost of public transport? Does anyone have those figures?

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This sounds great and will certainly be an interesting experiment to observe by everyone around. I wish here in Czech R any government would take leadership on this matter. Our public transport keeps getting more expensive to use. 

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There's always + and - side for every decision. But I think it wont be much crowded if the transport quantity is much and the arrival period is short.

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Great initiative. Hope other countries follow and introduce free buses to reduce pollution and traffic congestion.It will work

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Of course, the idea of "free" transportation doesn't really mean free. I mean, of course, nothing is free. It just means that EVERYONE will be paying for it. And it will just come as one big bill in the form of taxes. I'm sure the people at the top end of the tax-paying sphere in Germany (42% I think) will appreciate that.

Why does free always sound so good? 

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