Sunday, February 25, 2018

The Number of Variations on a Diesel Ban?

I was sitting and reading through German commentary (not the journalists or experts) this morning, and came to one simple three-liner piece where a German asked the question about the diesel car crisis, and this idea of allowing each city to write their own solution...their own car code....etc.  The guy asked...how many variations would exist then?

I paused over this, and the fact that Berlin (the federal leadership) wants to totally avoid getting involved, and wants to make this a city by city decision....creates an impossible situation.

An example.  Boris owns a diesel and is a salesman.  In a typical month, he will visit customers in forty-two cities around Baden-Wuerttemberg and Rhineland Pfalz.  Boris wakes up one day to discover that one of the cities has totally banned entry, period....with a diesel car.  One additional city has opted for a decal-tax program, where you pay thirty-two Euro a year to enter the city Monday through Friday with a diesel car.  Another city will allow you to enter three main avenues into the city but only from eight AM to six PM.  Three other cities will allow diesel cars to enter seven days a week, but a special tax deal will exist for the cost of four Euro per day to enter.

Then Boris starts to notice that various suburbs of Stuttgart are now fighting the city council, and the suburb itself wants to have the  authority to make their own diesel car rules. 

Boris tries to build a spreadsheet with the listing and now realizes that there are at least ten varieties of rules for his trade-route, and it's impossible to really plan a simple three-hour visit into Stuttgart or its suburbs to visit customers. 

Eventually smaller cities cite their distinction and they get into the creation of separate rules for themselves.  Somewhere along 2030, Germans will wake up and voice a massive complaint about the lack of ability to transit across the country.  At least one city will have gone to the idea of halting all gas/diesel car entry, and forcing everyone to use mass transit, scooters, bikes, or electric cars. 

Why?  In some odd way, Germany back a thousand years ago.....was a collection of 300 to 400 major communities, and not really bound together as one single nation. Along this diesel car story, we are progressing back to this stage of separate communities running the nation. No one can explain the logic to this, and it identifies the future trends as impossible to predict. 

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