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Can the petrol-powered light moped be phased out?

By Ralf Tinga / Updated: 13 Aug 2018

There are 700 000 light mopeds in use in The Netherlands; only 6 % of these are electric. The other 94 % are petrol-powered and cause relatively high levels of pollution in cities. The Dutch Parliament ordered a study, which has recently been published, to explore whether there was support for a phase-out of petrol-powered mopeds amongst moped owners.

Light mopeds – which have a maximum speed of 25 km/h - have become a popular mode of transport in The Netherlands. Their numbers have more than doubled in a decade, increasing from 300 000 in 2007 to almost 700 000 in 2017. Owners consider mopeds as being very practical: they are relatively cheap and are usually faster than the bicycle, car or public transport in moving around cities.

However, petrol-powered mopeds have relatively high levels of exhaust emissions. Scientific evidence suggests that in urban areas emissions from a petrol-powered moped are typically higher than those of a petrol-powered car on a per kilometere basis. For this reason, since 1 May 2018, the City of Amsterdam has banned mopeds and light mopeds, which were purchased before 2010, from being used in the city.

This month’s study by the Netherlands Institute for Transport Policy Analysis shows little support for a phase out of petrol mopeds amongst moped owners. They are satisfied with their transport mode and do not consider an electric moped to be a suitable alternative or have little awareness of this option. Surveys shows that only between 6-14 % of the current owners would consider switching to an electric moped if petrol mopeds were phased out.

Read the study here.

Picture: Oleg V Ivanov / Shutterstock.com - no permission to re-use image(s) without separate licence from Shutterstock

Country: 
Netherlands
Topic: 
Clean and energy-efficient vehicles
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