Motorcycle emissions performance will be assessed from 2024, according to a roadmap recently issued by the Hanoi Department of Natural Resources and Environment.
Vehicles that fail to meet standards will be charged and restricted from accessing certain areas of the city, the department said, adding that local authorities will draw up legal frameworks and issue standards for motorcycle emissions in 2023.
Besides, the municipal authorities will look into “area classification” measures to protect air quality and restrict motorbikes.
In 2024 and 2025, Hanoi will pilot the annual emission measurement for motorcycles that have been used for at least five years.
Vehicles are stuck in a traffic jam on Nguyen Trai Street in Hanoi's Thanh Xuan District. Photo: Pham Hung/ The Hanoi Times
After the trial period, from 2026, motorbikes of at least three years of use would have to undergo periodic emission tests, and those which fail to meet emission standards will be banned from entering certain areas in the capital city.
Hanoi will also restrict two-wheelers failing to meet emission standards in certain areas and consider charging vehicles for their emissions.
To realize this road map, the Hanoi Department of Natural Resources and Environment said that it will build a motorcycle emission management system with 170 stations. Moreover, traffic surveillance cameras will also be utilized to detect any vehicles that belch out black fumes.
The plan will be adjusted to suit the actual situation in each period, the environment department stated, adding that periodic emission testing may be applied to certain groups of vehicle owners during the first phase.
For instance, when people are not yet used to periodic emission evaluation, the city may only perform a targeted evaluation at first. Once there’s sufficient infrastructure and public transport is good enough for commuting, the city would still consider charging emission fees for vehicles.
Regarding vehicles that are either too old or do not meet emission standards, Hanoi would have support policies for vehicle owners, using public funds or from multiple sources to help owners change vehicles or find other ways to make a living in the case of motorcycle taxi drivers.
A recent survey conducted by the Hanoi Department of Natural Resources and Environment among 3,860 vehicle owners in the city revealed that 86% of the respondents support the emission assessment of old motorcycles. A total of 29% of those surveyed said they would dispose of their old and dilapidated motorcycles.
The department highlighted that regular emissions assessment and maintenance are aimed at saving fuel costs for drivers, reducing about 36% of carbon monoxide emissions and about 40% of hydrocarbon emissions, and alleviating the budgetary burden on healthcare for those impacted by air pollution.
As of July 2022, there were more than 7.6 million vehicles in Hanoi, including more than 1 million cars and nearly 6.5 million motorcycles, not counting vehicles from other localities passing through the city, according to the municipal Department of Transport.
A policy will be developed to use funds from the local budget and the private sector to help residents and businesses change their vehicles failing to meet emission criteria.
Earlier, in August 2021, Hanoi performed an old motorbike emission evaluation to obtain a scientific basis for solutions to improve air quality.
Random emission checks on over 5,200 vehicles used for at least five years showed that they tended to release more emissions. The program also introduced financial support plans to help people get rid of old motorbikes and switch to new ones.