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New Law In France Requires Car Ads To Tell People To Walk Or Bike Instead

New Law In France Requires Car Ads To Tell People To Walk Or Bike Instead

New legislation in France will see all car commercials tell people to walk, bike or take public transport instead.

Hannah Blackiston

Hannah Blackiston

From March 1, car commercials in France will be required to tell people to walk or bike instead as the country looks to improve transport emissions.

The legislation requires each advertisement to have one of three statements in each commercial, suggesting ways people can reduce their reliance on cars.

Roughly translated, the inclusions are, 'For short journeys, walk or cycle', 'Think about carpooling' and 'For day-to-day use, take public transportation'.

picturelibrary / Alamy Stock Photo
picturelibrary / Alamy Stock Photo

The move aims to tackle emissions from the automotive industry in the same way warnings on other products aim to change consumer habits, such as cigarettes or alcohol.

All advertising, including print, online or broadcast, will need to feature one of the three messages and they will need to be clearly visible on-screen or spoken aloud at the end of the ad on radio.

In certain contexts, there will also need to be the hashtag #SeDéplacerMoinsPolluer, which translates to #MoveWithoutPollution.

Justin Kase z12z / Alamy Stock Photo
Justin Kase z12z / Alamy Stock Photo

Fines for non-compliance are variable, up to €50,000.

Private cars currently make up 15 per cent of France's greenhouse emissions output and the country has already pledged to end the sale of gas and diesel-powered cars by 2040.

Minister for the Ecological Transition of France, Barbara Pompili, said the legislation was part of a wider effort to change the mindset of people and make them more accountable for the way they travel.

Carlo Bollo / Alamy Stock Photo
Carlo Bollo / Alamy Stock Photo

"Decarbonizing transport is not just switching to electric vehicles. It also means using, when possible, public transport or cycling," Pompili tweeted.

Transportation emissions account for a quarter of the European Union's greenhouse gas emissions, according to the European Environment Agency.

While this advertisement requirement won't directly contribute to lowering that, the hope is that it will assist in mindset change for consumers.

Xinhua / Alamy Stock Photo
Xinhua / Alamy Stock Photo

France has previously banned short flights, introduced more vegetarian meals into schools and updated the requirements for waste-free packaging to improve its environmental standing.

There are also several French cities, those with more than 150,000 residents, with low-emission zones.

Those cities will have speed restrictions by 2025 and will ban high-emission cars from entering.

But France has been criticised for having less ambitious carbon targets than the EU and only reducing emissions by 40 per cent before 2030, which is against the EU's 50 per cent target.
Featured Image Credit: agefotostock / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: News, France