France will pay its citizens to give up cars and convert to electric bikes. The government wants people to switch from gas-guzzling vehicles, and are willing to pay their citizens up to 4000 euros to do so. This generous sum is an increase from a 3000 euro incentive that was previously offered.
The full amount will be offered to those in low-income brackets in low emission zones. High earners will still be offered a rebate, but at a lower rate. However, even people who choose to keep their cars can still benefit from a 400 euro rebate on a new e-bike or pedal bike, which rises to 500 euros in Paris.
Paris is at the heart of the French movement to become more environmentally-friendly. The city intends on becoming the most green city in Europe by 2030. Thanks to the mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, it may soon earn that title. Across Paris 900 miles of bike lanes have been created- perfect for those who will take advantage of the offers to switch to ebikes.
The city is also implementing a traffic reduction plan, which will see less cars and other motorvehicles in the heart of the city. Hidalgo has said that by 2026 an additional 170,000 trees will be planted across the capital as well, and half of the city will be covered in plants.
Many other cities around the world are also implementing green initiatives too. In Milan, Italy, pavements have been widened and miles of new bike lanes implemented. Copenhagen boasts Copenhill, a waste-to-energy plant with a ski slope in the city. The Danish city also aims to be carbon-neutral by 2025! The capital of Slovenia, Ljubljana, is already car free in its city centre. In fact, Ljubljana was awarded Europe’s Green Capital in 2016. And it’s not hard to see why, as up to 75% of the city is made up of green spaces.
Other countries are offering people incentives to bike to work. Both Belgium and the UK are offering a rate per-mile to those who commute to work on a bike. In the UK people can claim 20p (23 cents) back on their tax returns for each mile cycled to work.